The Tories are fucking bastards

The Sunday Herald has reported that Benefits Agency staff are now being given special training so that they know what to say when a claimant threatens suicide. The social security system, the safety net that is supposed to supply the basic needs of citizens who have nowhere else to turn, is killing people. Think about that for a moment. The very system that is supposed to provide succour instead sucks the life from the weak. The only means left to those who have been marginalised to drag themselves back to relevance, instead it tosses them off the edge of the world. We live in a country which points accusingly at those it has betrayed, and condemns them for its own failure.

The means of salvation is the road to death, the sign above the Job Centre tells you to abandon hope, abandon dignity. Your humanity is left at the door and you become a statistic to figure in poverty porn on Channel 4. The comfortably off tsk their disapproval of your poverty. It’s all your own fault for being poor. Perform tricks, jump through hoops like a trained dog. Learn how to sit up nice and beg like a good boy or girl. And then you’ll get your welfare biscuits.

We’re not supposed to call it social security any more. Social security might make the poor think that they have a right to dignity. We’re supposed to call it welfare – a weasel word that reeks of charity and the kind bestowal of privilege by the powerful. Bugger that. We should not allow ourselves to be complicit in the murdering of language by the state, in its abuse of words in an attempt to hide the establishment’s own shame and disgrace.

In one of the richest countries in the world it’s not a privilege to have food in your stomach. It’s a right. It’s not a privilege to have a roof over your head. It’s a right. It’s not a privilege to have warmth in your home. It’s a right. In a country with an embarrassment of energy resources our political masters should be embarrassed and ashamed that there are people who cannot afford to heat their houses in a freezing winter. But the privileged look to their investments, they look to their directorships, they look to their wealth and they don’t look the poor in the eye.

Every homeless person, every begging outstretched hand, every paper cup proffered on a pavement, every sign scrawled in sobs, every tin of beans given in a foodbank, is a direct consequence of the refusal of the rich to accept that they have a responsibility to the society that has allowed them to amass their wealth. The rich in the 21st century tell the masses the solution lies in Victorian charity, while they squirrel their wealth away in tax havens. Those who suck wealth call themselves wealth creators, and we’re all impoverished as a result.

According to the Black Triangle group who campaign for disability rights, by March this year at least 80 people had committed suicide after being let down by the safety net that strangles, the safety net that kills. Almost 50 others had died as a direct result of benefits sanctions. Ponder that for a moment, and weep. Weep and grieve for the dead, howl in rage for the thousands more driven to desperate measures, to begging in the street, to trudging to food banks.

Claimants threatening suicide is now considered a likelihood. It’s now such a commonplace occurrence that policies and plans are put in place to deal with it. It clearly hasn’t occurred to the politicians who have ultimate responsibily for the system that the best way to deal with people who have been driven to suicide by the benefits system is to change the system so it supplies people’s basic needs and then the question of suicide would never arise.

The barbarities of the bedroom tax have driven disabled people from their homes. Bankers enjoy their bonuses on the back of a disabled man who has to bathe in a blow up pool because the state says it’s too expensive to allow him to remain in a house adapted for his needs.

When you’re poor, you’re not allowed to have human dignity. This is modern Britain. This is the state that Scotland remains in thrall to, a state of disgrace, a state of despair, a state of desolation.

I try hard to think of elegant and expressive words, to craft the perfect phrase. But then sometimes I just think – the Tories are fucking bastards. And the passionless appeasers who suck the soul and spirit from the Labour party are every bit as bad. The Tories and the Labour right condemn us to live in a society where consumerism consumes conscience, where avarice eats altruism, where capitalism craps on care and compassion. There is no place for the humane or the human in modern Britain. All there is left is the stultifying merry go round of trivialities of the Great British pat on the back, the Great British self-regard, the Great British blindness, the Great British PPI rip off. Like the wizened victim of bad plastic surgery this decrepit caricature of a state looks at itself in the mirror and thinks it looks damn fine. It can’t see what we see. It’s too far gone up its own arse. This is not a state that can be reformed. It can only be begun anew.

There is no more to say, only a righting of wrongs to seek, only a settling of scores to pursue. I can weep, weep weep because in the jaggy leaves of the thistle there is no more a Scotland where I was born like you. But I’m done weeping. I will grieve no more. I will stand arm in arm with my sisters and brothers and get angry, get organised, get even. I will live to see a new Scotland, a land where dignity has value, not a price.

Our day will come. There will be another independence referendum, and next time it’s personal.

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141 comments on “The Tories are fucking bastards

  1. Lollysmum says:

    Thanks for that-you said it all in this post.
    It’s already personal for me Paul. I’m seeing this everyday now & I’m at a loss to know how we can fight it! To think it’s only a few weeks since the election & it’s getting worse by the day.

    • Iain Hill says:

      The trouble is, the Dug believes what he writes, I believe what he writes, but the general public no longer believes it. Any party seeking to help the poorest in our society will have to face head on the corporate media and their masters, who have whittled away at the public’s sympathy, till there is little left. Individuals must help through food banks etc but where is the political force to challenge this evil situation?

      • It’s worse. The war on the poorest is a deliberate appeal to the urge to punish, now as always the Tories’ best friend.

        • linda says:

          and why pray are you asking for money to run this blog. It was your choice to do it and it is your opinions that are being aired so I am not sure why it should be costing you money to do this hobby.

          • aitchbee says:

            WGD is a professional writer and is therefore perfectly entitled to request some recompense the time taken for writing this blog, since it takes time that might otherwise be taken up writing something for payment from another source. You are netiher obliged to read it or to contribute to it. What’s the problem?

            • John Gourlay says:

              well said aitchbee.

            • Dave Hansell says:

              It would seem reasonable to surmise that the point Paul has made in this thread has been well and truly proven. All the bloody grief which takes place in the world and a whinge is submitted about donations to the blog.

              It’s like witnessing a complaint about the lack ice cubes in a cocktail as the Titanic goes down. There is simply no sense of perspective, just a deliberate and wilful contrariness, either overt or covert by totally ignoring it, to excuse any and all of the actions, behaviours, policies, attitudes etc of those with money power and privilege and to jump on any criticism of the impact of what is being excused. As though the documented evidence is mere upinion and not worth considering – the sub text being nothing to see here, just some mouthy gobsshite mouthing off please carry on living in your entertainment world and ignore the reality around you.

              It must be really painful to be suffering from so much repetitive strain injury from so much forelock tugging.

            • Many people really enjoy reading WGD’s blog and would miss it if he stopped writing – of course they are happy to pay for the pleasure of reading it, just the same as they would pay to read a decent newspaper if such a thing existed. Keep going WGD!

          • Scott Keery says:

            I have to agree . As much as I agree with the wgd I don’t see why he thinks he should be paid for it .

            • weegingerdug says:

              Writing is my full time job, and writers need to be paid. It takes time and energy to craft 1000 words day in day out. I ask for donations, not obligatory subscriptions. If people feel I deserve payment, they can pay me as much or as little as they want. If they don’t feel I deserve anything there is no obligation to pay a penny. It’s your call.

              Look on this blog as a restaurant where there’s no charge for anything on the menu. You get to eat my words for free – it’s up to you to decide whether or not I deserve a tip for what you are served up.

          • Sooz says:

            What an extraordinary thing to say, Linda. Do you not think writers should be paid for the work they do? Or do you think that anything on the web should be free?

            You buy newspapers, I presume. You buy books. Those who can afford to contribute to Paul’s blog are helping a writer to make an income. This is his job, his profession.

          • anne gomez says:

            Agree..I like most..don’t have money and if I chose to do a post/blog on fb..I eouldn’t dream of ssking for money..even although I am skint and with little money to pay bills etc

            • Dave Hansell says:

              So let’s just recap here. Professional writer, ie someone who makes their living from writing to pay their way in life rather than, as some would put it, rely on benefits, writes regular blog and actually gives people a free choice, as in no one is forced, take it or leave it, if they wish to donate towards it.

              Said writer posts thread on blog about people being driven to suicide, some of whom by the way (for the benefit of the terminally ignorant) happen to have served in our armed forces, by the application of the benefits system policy driven by deliberate policy; about disabled people being denied what they need to live an anywhere near normal life; and the I’m alright and don’t give a shit about anyone else Jacks amongst us who not only do not see this as a problem but actively seek to relegate it’s impact as not worth worrying about.

              Instead of engaging with the pertinent issue the priority for some comments is to start start belly aching like mardy arsed kids about a free choice take it or leave it option to donate or not to the blog.

              Now the question is, in this context, do those comments either understand or even care that this gives an impression very close to the kind of people who this thread identifies as detailed above?

            • but perhaps you would not have the large number of people following your posts/blog that WGD has, and perhaps those who followed you wouldn’t miss you if you stopped posting or blogging. Therein lies the difference – if you can write something that people want to read, you can ask for remuneration for the time taken to provide their entertainment/education/enlightenment. If you are worth it, people will pay. Envy is a demeaning state of mind.

          • FWIW, I share a given name with WGD, but (being comfortably retired) do not ask for money on my own blog as WGD and many of my friends do.

          • Russ says:

            The WeeGingerDug is a kind of celebrity up here (unpaid mind you). I personally have a badge of his which I got at a rally.
            People enjoy reading his comments, so why shouldn’t they be allowed to say thank you?
            Or do you have to have been on Big Brother before you get paid in your world?

      • Nigel Mace says:

        What a pathetic response, Iain! This is the Dug at his sulphurous, 18th century best – brutal and eloquent and making it very plain what the political answer is – namely to fight for our independence. So get behind the next referendum campaign and meanwhile work for the SNP whose political rise has combined an effective attack on the politics of austerity with the power to call, in due and wisely chosen time, for a second referendum.

        • Nosliw Etak says:

          Well reading this without the knowledge it was for Scottish independence I whole heartedly agreed with most things and related to more than i’d like but this is the same for most people in Britain not just Scotland. Corbyn is the answer not jumping ship, you are meant to be British, some of the views of ‘British’ people on here are a real let down, but it sounds like you weren’t very British in the first place.

          • macart763 says:

            You don’t get a choice in being British, nor do individuals get a say in defining what ‘being British’ means if you wish to live on this archipelago, its a point of geography. You do get to choose which country you live in within the British isles and that is a cultural/political/lifestyle choice. Scotland isn’t a region, its a country as is England, Wales and Northern Ireland. We all have individual cultures, histories, needs and aspirations specific to our geography and communities. That’s not to say we don’t share common circumstance and history, of course we do, we’re neighbours and use the same central government. We exist as a unitary state through a bilateral international treaty, but don’t confuse unitary state with unitary country and state. Our state is a construct that has run out of control. Run for the elite by the elite, corporately compromised and corrupt. This institution is broken and broken beyond repair with the aid of the established parties, Labour included.

            So yes, we’re well aware that UK state governance is a problem for everyone. You seem to believe that is a problem whose solution lies solely with Labour and in particular with one faction within the Labour party. I’m sorry to say that parliamentary Labour is part of the problem. They became paid up members of the establishment a long time ago and it is the establishment, the system of government that is the root of the problem. Labour representation in Scotland, for us especially, has proven a catastrophic failure of representation in governance.

            As the other and numerically smaller signatory to the treaty its a wee bit difficult for us to affect the voting intention of the larger signatory either in the house of commons or against the wishes of the larger and wider body politic. If the people of England wish to vote blue Tory, that’s the government everyone gets as was demonstrated in May. Three countries voted against Conservative government, one voted for. Take a wild guess at what the result was? One country out of four, so who is truly out of step? Who really jumped ship and abandoned their partners? Turned the other way when it was to their perceived advantage and let central government go to rot an ruin and not just this year, but over a period of decades?

            When it comes to throwing guilt trips around look closer to home. It begins by looking in the mirror. We did, didn’t like what we saw and now we’re doing something about it. We have a party and government that is anti austerity, anti WMD, pro Common weal and progressive. The people did that and it wasn’t easy to achieve with the weight of the state and their media machine on our necks.

            It never is.

          • I’m not british and never have been, I am Scottish. I have never had th slightest tinge of identification with ‘britishness’, in fact most ‘britishness I see, in the media for example feels very foreign to me, with values that I abhor. And I wouldn’t trust Corbyn as far as I could throw him – he is no democrat, he is just another britnat, even though he seems rather more left wing than the usual gang.

            • Valaquen says:

              The only Brits are the Welsh (‘Welsh’ coming from an Old English word meaning ‘foreigner’, cheekily applied to the native Britons by the invading Anglo-Saxons): the English appropriated the country of Wales and its culture in order to justify the annexation of Ireland and Scotland in the same manner that the legendary King Arthur did, who, according to Geoffrey of Monmouth, practically conquered Europe – tales that were taken very seriously for centuries. Edward I even wrote a letter to the Pope that claimed since King Arthur had once subdued Scotland, and Edward himself was Arthur’s successor, then Scotland owed him fealty. The English Crown used Arthur as justfication for the British imperial project (a united Scotland, England, Ireland and Wales) all the way until Elizabeth I. The British identity co-existed alongside early Scots and Irish, was approporiated by the English, and then foisted upon the Scots and Irish for centuries.

  2. kevin says:

    Wonderful words, Paul – but it absolutely stinks that they’re necessary. What a shabby, ugly country this skewed United Kingdom is.
    However, I feel inspired by your closing words. Next Referendum I’m going-to-town and my effort will be double that of the last Ref – let’s get rid of this hell, let the whole of Scotland vote Yes, let us be vigilant this time so that they can’t steal it by fraud and bogus postal ballot.

    Say the word, Nicola, we’re waiting to engage.

  3. As usual Paul, you voice what many of us are thinking. This is a state beyond redemption, it needs to be ripped asunder and begun anew. For those of us who live north of the border we have a possible escape. I only hope that my fellow Scots will realise that the Britain they think is worth preserving is long gone, all that is left is a union flag-waving husk waiting for someone to put it out of its misery.

    • Nosliw Etak says:

      I read this post and it wasn’t until the bottom I realised you were all Scottish lol because it’s not just you who feel like this, it’s all the people of Britain, I mean look at the last election, outcome but more importantly the amount of votes. Independence is a ridiculous idea in my very humble opinion, for many reasons, ‘strength in numbers’ trade, work, history but the main one money. The whole Scottish independence argument from Nicola and co. was based on oil prices being over $100 a barrel when in the history of oil prices that only happened once and since then it’s been well under, it just doesn’t add up. We are an island, people in Cornwall feel separate from London and they feel independent of ,,Birmingham? and they feel separate/independent of ?New castle blah blah blah. To sum it up I’m trying to say don’t abandon Britain, my Britain your Britain, abandon the morons who promise you things they can’t deliver. It’s 300+ seats needed for a voice not 50+ Labour has lost it’s way in the past but so have all the parties and all we have is cardboard cut out robot politicians who haven’t a clue about real peoples issues. All but one Jeremy Corbyn , socialist humanist human lol The only person in politics worth believing in

      • Marconatrix says:

        The people of England dominate the UK electoral system and have saddled us all, like it or not, with god knows how many more years of government by Tories and/or Toryfied ‘Labour’. Scotland is and always has been its own country with its own laws and constitution, and for a while now with its own parliament restored, and so with its own voice again. We are in a sort of marriage with England, which like all such relationships has had its ups and downs, but increasingly the two partners do not see eye to eye, and put simply the dominant partner has turned abusive. Divorce cannot be too long delayed.

        As for England, well you lot elect the abusive Tories so you must, on average at least, agree with screwing the poor, sick and otherwise unfortunate. OTOH if you’d prefer the Scottish way, then the door is always open.

      • I dearly hope Jeremy Corbyn wins the Labour leadership, gets the disenfranchised left-wing voters of England out of their apathy, and wins the next general election. Living as I do in England, he will get my vote given the chance.

        But when I am back in Scotland, I will be out helping my sister campaign for the SNP and for a YES vote at the next referendum. With all my heart I hope it works.

      • Saor Alba says:

        @Nosliw Etak

        The independence argument was not just based on oil at all. You have simply made this up Kate. I believe that you have no idea about the independence arguments at all. It is simply “your humble opinion” and your thoughts appear to be naive.

        Where were Labour when the 300+ seats were needed? They abandoned ship due to the egotistic stance of Milliband who did not take the offer of the hands of friendship from 3 Party’s that publicly reached out to him. Labour are Tory light and are simply searching for votes, not standing on any principles. Any principles they had are long gone.

        This is, indeed, your Britain and I suggest you can keep it. I don’t want it and neither do many others up here. It is a corrupt and warmongering state “run by an elite for an elite” (quoting Macart).

        Labour are not the answer and have proved themselves to be as corrupt as all the Unionist parties are. They have not just lost their way, they have lost their moral judgement and conscience. The Unionists are in bed with corporate institutions and multinationals who pull the strings and have no regard for ordinary people.

        Jeremy Corbyn, good man that he might be, is part of a dinosaur of a party. He is simply following the lead from Scotland, using phrases he heard here – we are for “hope not fear”. I will be glad if he is successful and can change things for the better in the South, but you are not listening.

        We want independence because we are a distinct people who want to govern our own affairs. Macart (above) sets it out very clearly and you could do much worse than digest his words.

  4. Garyjc says:

    Paul, wow – just fuckin wow. Powerful stuff and so f’in unecessary in one of the richest cuntries (as spelled) in the world

  5. My heartfelt thanks to ‘The Dug’ for expressing – both eloquently and elegantly – what I have been feeling for many a long day. We must ensure that when next our opportunity comes to throw off this dehumanising yoke, we grab it with both hands and don’t let go until we are free to be citizens of a socially just, democratic nation.

  6. Grizzle McPuss says:

    I think like you Paul, many of us are raging tonight. Story after miserable bloody story is emerging of the crisis creeping up within the Welfare and Legal systems all over the United Kingdom.

    And all of the crap is hitting the poor and vulnerable and it feels like it’s building a momentum. As if the increase in food-banks and their usage wasn’t already enough of an alarm bell.

    I often teach my kids one of the most significant lessons from recent history:-

    The Nazi camp guards were not the worst villains from the concentration camp horror. They followed orders and knew damn fine what they were doing; of those detained, few ever denied their complicity.

    No, the greatest crime was actually committed by the local towns-folk and villagers near those camps. Those that turned a blind eye to what was happening all around them, those that denied the stench, noise and movement of visually downtrodden humans. To hear the excuses of “there was nothing we could do…we didn’t know it was happening” is testament of shame that still hangs around their necks.

    And what we have in the United Kingdom today unfortunately are the modern equivalent of those that would rather close their curtains to what is going on around them. These are the folks that see a scrounger, not an unemployed person. They see inconvenience, where we see disability. These are also the people who see every penny as a prisoner and resent the thought of helping someone else (“I pay my bloody taxes, why should I contribute more?”). These are the arrogant folks that forget to recite “there but for the grace of [your entity] go I”.

    It’s sad that society is unfortunately full of this greed and blindness in a combination that gives some the right to think that they must get to materialistic utopia by stepping on those less fortunate. These are the folks sold on the Wolf of Wall Street, ‘greed is good’ mantra. These are the folks that want their free health care, hate contributing towards it…and loathe the thought that someone less fortunate might be using their “hard earned cash”

    Thankfully, some of us are content with a moderate wallet, knowing that we are far richer from our observance, support & generosity.

    In England and Wales, those that still care enough and have felt disenfranchised have the chance to embrace Corbyn-ism as their hope in order that the Welfare State isn’t completely eradicated in their countries.
    For us in Scotland, we are already on that road and must continue to aim for our independence to get on with the task that the majority of us have always voted for; a society based on making sure everyone is taken care of.

    We must hope that those that had their doubts in September 2014 start to see that we can do better than what has become the new agenda. We must start to teach everyone that achievement is good, but it mustn’t come at the price of leaving the weakest to flounder.

    Tonight I embrace your sentiment Paul, and I extend the “Fuck You” to all the amateur economists out there in whose groundless arguments they cannot see the reality of a thriving & caring Scotland that COULD do a damn site better with its own agenda than the failing policies of Westminster.

    • katherine hamilton says:

      Spot on

    • Dave Hansell says:

      Sadly the point about the locals in Nazi Germany turning a blind eye and closing the curtains is spot on.

      Too many of our so called fellow citizens have deliberately chosen to opt out of society in favour of an attitude, which is almost sociopathic in nature, that what they regard as their personal rights trump everything else. Responsibility and mutual obligations are considered beneath contempt by this parasitic self regarding section of our society.

      Yesterday I was reminded of an occassion 50 years ago when my late maternal grandfather was reported to the DHSS by a neighbour of someone whose garden he was tending. He had recently retired at the time after 44 years on the railways and gardening along with fishing was one of his passions. Apart from tending the local chapel garden pro bono he also went around the estate offering to do the same for other people just to keep active. Someone suggested he charge for this service so one day he offered someone his services for four bob an hour and got reported by the next door neighbour because he was receiving a state pension.

      This recollection was brought on as I was stood in various parts of our local city centre trying to hand out leaflets and collect signatures for a petition against the TTIP which had been organised by 38 Degrees. We were among a group of about 20 who turned up and in the space of three hours my wife and I managed to collect the grand total of 25 signatures. In a part of the country with a reputation for grasping anything free gratis with both hands at every opportunity you could not give leaflets away to the nothing to do with me I don’t want to know and I don’t want to care whats going to hit me as well as you and everyone else brigade. One chap even shouted at us.

      So yes, your point here is about as close to the reality which exists as it is possible to get. As Orwell noted ignorance is strength and there are an awful lot of strong people out there who protect their right to ignorance at any cost to the extent even of the suffering and lives of their neighbours. They are not only the rich, wealthy, or powerful. The majority of them live amongst us and would willingly die in a ditch to protect the rights of the rich and powerful to fleece themselves and the rest of us whilst at the same time never missing an opportunity to impoverish their neighbours. The parable of the beam and the mote is lost on this particular section of our society.

    • Nosliw Etak says:

      How could Scotland afford that though? The whole argument for independence was ‘inflated unrealistic’ oil prices, and on another point I kind of catch you drift with the whole statement but to say the people who turned a blind eye to the death camps were worse than the soldiers is crazy, I mean they obviously all evil messed up people but surely the people torturing and killing people are worse than the ones who didn’t tell. It’s a ridiculous comparison

      • Grizzle McPuss says:

        Listen Kate; if you wish to comment on a subject, any subject, try to become acquainted with some of the basic facts before offering up your pearls of wisdom.

        The whole argument for independence was NOT based around ‘inflated unrealistic’ oil prices; that’s what the MSM / Better Together mobs had you believe. Perhaps you should read the actual proposed economic profiles that an independent Scotland could set if controlling its own economic policies, and not those of WM.
        Oil was always quoted as the bonus on top of the potential economic performance of the Scottish economy, which in its own right, out performs many countries around the globe. Have you seen our food, drink, technology, energy etc etc sectors?

        If like most ignorant amateur economists you wish to compare the economic performance of Scotland now against rUK, based upon George Osbourne’s model, then yes, you will see deficits and economic struggle…

        BUT THAT WAS NEVER THE INTENTION OF AN INDEPENDENT SCOTTISH GOVERNMENT CONTROLLING ITS OWN AFFAIRS.

        And as for your comment re: death camp observers. If you are the kind of person who watches an evil bastard commit a ‘crime’ against another human, a perpetrator who is perhaps either ‘following orders’ or is just a natural-borne sadist, and you think your conscience is clearer because you didn’t actually get your hands dirty, then I suggest you go see a therapist.

        To walk on by, to ignore or attempt to justify the persecution of another makes you as culpable as any perpetrator.

        History is unfortunately full of hand-wringing apologists, who in ‘their’ hindsight “could have done more”, but who instead opted for the head under the blanket approach because it didn’t directly affect them.

      • Dave Hansell says:

        The salient point about the death camps and local people is that those local people in all walks of life had ample opportunity to prevent things getting to that stage.

        Typing into the search engine of one’s choice (Google is not compulsory, there are plenty of other better ones available) the words ” They thought they were free” will take one to a site containing a very poignant extract from a tract by a German who lived through this period, Milton Meyer, who had the honesty to confront this very point after the war.

        He lays out the incremental process by which a society went from scapegoating particular groups of people, through to legislation and media and state support for violence against those groups, through to the concentration and work camps and finally the death camps. Making the point that at each small incremental stage and step everyone was looking to someone else to speak out, to take the responsibility, to say this step being taken seems innocuous and even reasonable at face value but it will lead to this and then something more drastic until the stage is reached where we are all tainted with the loss of our humanity.

        Forty odd years ago when I joined up we only had six weeks basic training instead of twelve for standard infantry training because we were going onto further trade training. The first thing we were told on our first troop parade (and it was repeated to us constantly) was that just because you are only getting half the standard basic training it does not matter whether you are trained as a cook, a mechanic, a clerk, a radio operator or a latrine digger, you are a soldier first and a tradesman second. And two weeks in, during the standard lecture on the Geneva Convention, the same metaphor was used to convey the point that it does not matter whether you are an officer, an NCO, a private, a civilian or what hat you have on your head or title bestowed upon you, you are a human being first and whatever else second. No excuses. If it’s wrong you have a duty, responsibility and obligation to act like a human being not an arsehole towards your fellow human beings.

        This was only a little over a quarter of a century after widespread rejection of what became known as the Nuremburg defence. The passage of time seems to have dulled that lesson and it’s message. Nevertheless, whether people like it or not it is still pertinent. The point it makes is still the truth. No excuses.

      • Saor Alba says:

        Evil exists because good men stand by and do nothing about it.

  7. Guga says:

    It is little wonder that the Red Tories are a disaster area. Instead of standing up for, and fighting for the ordinary people, they are bootlace boys (i.e. they are so far up the arse of the Blue Tories that only the bootlaces are showing).

    Our only solution is freedom from the shackles of the English.

    • Nosliw Etak says:

      How are you under the shackles of the English? What rubbish. You are British and the Scottish people have more spend on them that the English per head and don’t you get free education? It’s the little people need freedom from the big wigs, nothing to do with being Scottish

      • Marconatrix says:

        For the 999th time, Scotland subsidises England, not the other way, but maybe the news hasn’t reached you, not entirely surprising given the endless state propaganda. Go and educate yourself Kate, then perhaps we can have an informed discussion with you.

      • Jimmie Waldie says:

        It’s Only the Scottish people that will fight for your Human rights and we are Not British 85% of the Scottish people in 1603 did not want the Union a King of Scotland was asked to accept The English throne and the daft bastard did. Scotland one of the richest countries in the World subject to Tory Nazism When we leave the Union and I hope very soon England will sink beneath the waves unless the English National Party takes power and Good luck to them if they are Socialist they will do well

      • daviddynamo says:

        Hello Nosliw Etak, your ideas about Scottish independence and financial affairs are about 3 years out of date. The independence campaign was a tough school, and a superb education for people who choose to look further than the MainStream Media for the facts.

        I recommend you visit http://www.businessforscotland.co.uk/ for the financial case; and start with this article http://www.businessforscotland.co.uk/10-key-economic-facts-that-prove-scotland-will-be-a-wealthy-independent-nation/

        For how the people of Scotland were screwed over by Westminster for the oil in Scotland’s waters, take the time to read the 18-page McCrone Report, it really is shocking. http://www.oilofscotland.org/MccronereportScottishOffice.pdf

        Finally, it was only the total SNP success at Westminster that allowed Corbyn to emerge a a potential left-leaning winner for UK Labour, You’re welcome, but keep remembering this. Without them there would be no chance for Corbyn.

      • Saor Alba says:

        Your comments are utterly naive Kate. As Marconatrix says, you should go an educate yourself.

      • Saor Alba says:

        daviddynamo has kindly provided you with some credible links to find out the facts for yourself Kate. Do yourself a favour and check them out.

  8. Tears will get us nowhere. The ballot box will get us nowhere.
    History shows us that such injustices you describe can only be overcome by direct action. The British Empire has to see teeth before it will relax its grip on Scotland any more than it has done

    .The last of the Free

    “Whenever I consider the origin of this war and the necessities of our position, I have a sure confidence that this day, and this union of yours, will be the beginning of freedom to the whole of Britain. To all of us slavery is a thing unknown; there are no lands beyond us, and even the sea is not safe, menaced as we are by a Roman fleet. And thus in war and battle, in which the brave find glory, even the coward will find safety. Former contests, in which, with varying fortune, the Romans were resisted, still left in us a last hope of succour, inasmuch as being the most renowned nation of Britain, dwelling in the very heart of the country, and out of sight of the shores of the conquered, we could keep even our eyes unpolluted by the contagion of slavery. To us who dwell on the uttermost confines of the earth and of freedom, this remote sanctuary of Britain’s glory has up to this time been a defence. Now, however, the furthest limits of Britain are thrown open, and the unknown always passes for the marvellous. But there are no tribes beyond us, nothing indeed but waves and rocks, and the yet more terrible Romans, from whose oppression escape is vainly sought by obedience and submission.

    Robbers of the world, having by their universal plunder exhausted the land, they rifle the deep. If the enemy be rich, they are rapacious; if he be poor, they lust for dominion; neither the east nor the west has been able to satisfy them. Alone among men they covet with equal eagerness poverty and riches. To robbery, slaughter, plunder, they give the lying name of empire; they make a solitude and call it peace.”]

    Attributed to Calgacus the Caledonian Chieftain by the Roman Tacitus

  9. fionamacinnes says:

    your pen is a mighty weapon sir – good on ya

  10. Steve Asaneilean says:

    As Macart says 🙂

  11. […] The Tories are fucking bastards. […]

  12. Steve Asaneilean says:

    Tories arevas Tories do. Leopards don’t change their spots.

    They have their origin in Jacobite tradition but have come a long way from there. They have always been in modern times a party of the rich, for the rich, by the rich so it’s in their nature I guess.

    But that (Not) Labour should support them and abstain in the vote for their “welfare reforms” tells you where our fire should really be directed.

    Remember the modern Conservative and Unionist Party came about just over 100 years through the merger of Conservatives and Liberal Unionists who opposed the Liberal Party’s then support for Irish Home Rule.

    Plus ça change…

  13. Fiona says:

    I have linked to this post and added some comments of my own here
    http://thosebigwords.forumcommunity.net/?t=45811145&p=408807351

    I honestly believe that we are travelling a dangerous road in the UK. I do not wish to see the long term results.

    I am grateful for your optimism, WGD, but today I do not share it. I wish I did.

  14. Cyril Wheat says:

    Sunday morning with a bacon and tomato butty whilst reading this call to arms so to speak. Didn’t think the day could get better till I read your piece. Fired up and with you all the way. Cheers mate for this stirring piece.

  15. I laughed when I ready your title.that has been my mantra ever since the Tories were elected 6 years ago. With their push for Fracking in the northern areas, I truely hope people will stand up and say ‘NO MORE’. English and Scots. If we do not fight for our country now Scotland is lost

    • Nosliw Etak says:

      You mean Britain!! English people feel the same, listen to Corbyn , educate yourselves. The worm is turning.

      • Marconatrix says:

        Well good luck, but in all likelihood Corbyn will be stabbed in the back by his own party machine. If you were serious you’d already be planning a new party. ‘Labour’ doesn’t want or need reform. They are content to sit in phoney ‘opposition’ and wait for Buggin’s turn.

      • macart763 says:

        Good for you. The worm turned in Scotland eight years ago.

        What kept you?

      • Fiona says:

        when I talk of my country I do not mean UK and I do not mean Britain. I am not a nationalist in the sense that word is often used: but I AM Scottish. You, Ms Wilson, are clearly British, because you say you are. I have no quarrel with that, nor would I have the effrontery to argue with you about it. It is merely a fact. Please extend the same courtesy to those of us who identify differently. Or are you quite happy to be told by French person that you are NOT British, you are European?

        A great many english people do feel the same about this government and the direction this state has taken. No one doubts it. But so what? Those who don’t support the tories in England have an electoral route to change them: but they don’t. For some obscure reason they appear to think that levelling down is the best we can do, and that is an extraordinarily common response from english commentators. I am tired of it.

        As a Scot I have a realistic option, after years of being disenfranchised, and I am very happy about that. I will support independence for the sake of a government elected by Scottish people and for Scottish people. That is a perfectly normal situation. I do not want an empire or influence in the world. I want a normal small north european social democracy. I am not going to get that within the union.

        I see you believe that we are not economically viable. That is not true. But if it were true it would be the best argument you could possibly make in favour of independence. Because there is no explanation for that state of affairs except the union. That is the only common factor which distinguishes Scotland from the otherwise diverse nordic countries with and without oil: and they are both more prosperous and more democratic than we are.

        The UK is not run in Scotland’s interest. It is not run in the interests of the north of England either. All of us serve the financial elite, to our own detriment.

        You imagine we are as ignorant of the situation as you are yourself. We are not. Many of us were labour supporters in the past. We know exactly what Corbyn is saying and some of us are heartened to think that people in rUK may at last wake up. But it is nothing to do with us. It is my view that it is inevitable that a social democratic alternative will arise in England, whether within or outside the labour party. And I wish that alternative well. But it is far too late for those of us who gave up on the union and its pretendy politics long ago.

        If Corbyn wins,and if he can do what he says he wants to do (at best dubious), then some in Scotland may return to supporting labour. I suspect quite a lot will do that, because many have abandoned labour with a heavy heart. But more will not, because we really have taken the trouble to educate ourselves and there is no case to be made for the union at all. If there were, it would have been made by now and it wasn’t.

      • williemin says:

        Why are you shoutin for Corbyn Wilson we don’t need him in or for Scotland, he is already a committed Unionist so I don’t think too much Scottish people care for him also had a look on your FB page and you are so smitten with him I dinna ken fit wye ye bother comin onto a mainly Scottish page.

      • Saor Alba says:

        The worm should have turned before now.

  16. artyHetty says:

    Well said Paul. Added to that they lack any morals, compassion or conscience.

    These are extremely worrying times, the balance between the good and the bad is in peril, if there ever was a balance.

  17. Tears in my eyes. And cold hard determination.

    Outstanding writing

  18. Peter says:

    Benefits agency staff need to RISE UP and simply REFUSE to impose these sanctions any longer!

    • aitchbee says:

      The staff are really between a rock and a hard place. Implement the sanctions or be subject to them for leaving a perfectly good job.

    • When I was unemployed and signing on, I actually applied for one of the dwp jobs – they knew their policies were going to rquire many more DWP staff. Applicants had to complete a poorly disguised personality questionnaire. I suspect now that this was to ensure those recruited would follow through unquestioningly, regardless how barbaric the orders. If I remember rightly, even existing staff had to go through the re-application process complete with this test. I never got the job by the way, for which I am eternally grateful.

  19. mealer says:

    Independence.Its coming.The dogs in the street know it’s coming.Its inevitable.And where does that leave those who don’t believe in Scotland?On the wrong side.Thats where.On the dirty Tory side.We must continue to point that out to them.To rub their noses in it.

    • Nosliw Etak says:

      Wow, you are on the wrong side, can’t you see your playing right into their hands, people voted ukip to keep labour from making a government with SNP therefore electing the tories again. Mainly because of all the reasons on this thread, everybody is disillusioned, but you’re the ones who ”don’t believe in Britain”. Politicians are fake lying robots,,,listen to Corbyn, remember you are actually British, have some faith and do some work, instead of slating Britain/England on here why not try and find out how you can make it better

      • Marconatrix says:

        The wrong side of History, as they say. Well, time will tell.

      • Jan Cowan says:

        Nosliw, just sit down, absorb the wise words of WGD, think clearly and try to rise above the incessant disinformation you’ve been exposed to over the years. Time consuming, I know but not too difficult …..if you put your mind to it. Good luck and all the best.

      • Guga says:

        Kate, you are a good little Red or Blue Tory troll, and if you want to stay on your knees, tugging your forelock for the rest of your life, fair enough, but don’t expect the rest of us to follow your lead.

      • Fiona says:

        If you are merely here to reiterate the nonsense you get from the unionist press, may I assure you we are well aware of what they say. We don’t believe them, and nor should you.

  20. Fiona says:

    @ artyHetty

    There is no “middle way” between good and evil.

    In my view there is a necessary balance, but it is not so characterised. They way I see it is that we are fundamentally dual in our nature. We are a social species and so we are hard wired for cooperation and solidarity. We are also individuals and so we are also basically selfish. That duality is inherent and it cannot be fudged or ignored. The various philosophical and political positions tend to reflect that reality, however covertly, placing emphasis on one aspect or the other at different times. At present we live in a “selfish” ascendancy, and it is not at all clear how or why the emphasis shifts from time to time.

    To me, any position which denies either aspect is doomed to failure for it works against the grain of our nature. I realise that neoliberals argue that the selfish aspect is the whole of our nature, but they are demonstrably wrong and can only make that case by cherry picking and by ignoring evidence: but so too are leftists who rely on the cooperative strand to the exclusion of the other feature

    The post war consensus is the best example I know of an arrangement which dealt with the duality in a realistic way. it was not a consensus in the sense that everybody agreed about aims and methods: rather it was a consensus which recognised that those aspects of our nature are fundamentally opposed and always will be. Unsurprisingly the rich emphasise the selfish bit and the poor the cooperative bit: and that translates into politics and philosophy and economics etc. The achievement of the post war consensus was the recognition that there can never be peace and prosperity unless there is compromise. Both strands must acknowledge the continuing presence of the other and accept that concessions must be made between those opposed objectives. No-one gets all they want: but the accommodation is one we can all live with.

    That is the best we can do, IMO. That is what the Thatcher revolution overthrew. It did so consciously and with a long term strategy, not the least part of which is the distortion of language and understanding which underpinned that consensus. There were tories who embraced the consensus: they were purged. There were labour supporters who also embraced it: they too were purged. In that sense both of the most “successful” leaders of the mainstream parties really succeeded in killing those parties in the longer term. One nation tories were replaced by the ruthless proponents of the selfish strand, who brook no compromise: Thatcher described those “wets” as traitors, and she meant that. One nation Labour failed to understand that fundamental shift and it is their blindness which has led to the current situation: they kept trying to compromise. But a step towards the middle ground was met by the opposition taking a step back, not forward. Until the labour party stood to the right of one nation tories and apparently still had no clue how they had betrayed themselves and their support.

    And still they have no analysis: but in making that shift they have been corrupted and with no real work through centralisation of power in the executive (in the name of discipline) the devil found work and they made money instead of policy.

    The shift is neither acknowledged nor analysed by our media. It is probably too abstract for our hard headed notions of what constitutes common sense, in this country: or at least in the country the media make up.

    But the people still believe in that consensus: and the parties know it else they would not continue to use the language suited to that arrangement. They talk of “all in it together” in all its guises: but watch what they do not what they say: for they do not say what they actually intend to do: they trade on a trust, fast eroding, which arises from the fact that most people believe in consensus and the idea that most people are doing their best. They are indeed doing their best: but not to achieve the aims of that consensus. For the longest time we continued to believe they did accept those aims: partly because they lie: partly because we find it hard to conceive that some people really do wish starvation on others. for the greater good. They prefer to ignore those outcomes; or, if forced to see them, to paint them as “collateral damage”, unintended and inevitable. Even, sometimes, as “tough love”. Comforting stories, which mean you do not have to face the bastard in the mirror every morning.

    That sophisticated arrangement of the post war consensus is what the current crop of “leaders” describes as the “failed policies of the past”: as if old stuff = bad stuff. Irrespective of the fact that it produced better outcomes for all: higher economic growth AND greater equality. But what do outcomes matter in face of “modernity”. I say we should scrap the 2 times table, for it has not been “reformed” for ages

  21. Just when I was thinking you couldn’t get any better Paul, you come up with writing that is so powerful, it deserves an much wider audience. We had the chance to detach our people from this madness, but unfortunately didn’t take it, and while I agree we will be an independent nation one day. I fear a long hard road lies ahead, mainly due to the implacable opposition from most of the M.S.M, who, with their biased reporting, will continue to poison peoples minds with their propaganda.
    We have been brainwashed for over three hundred years, and reversing that trend is never going to be easy.

  22. Laura says:

    I’m a first time reader of this blog. Wow. A powerful message.

    As a single parent who has claimed JSA I have firsthand experience of the cruelty of our current regime – it was made clear from day one that I’m a lazy freeloader, a burden and should feel lucky for the money that was so grudgingly given. I will say though, that I genuinely feel for the people that work there. I often had to remind myself that they were human too and who would enjoy handing out sactions? The powers that be have just built up a horrible place where fear, desperation, dehumanisation and hate collide. Plus they’re stuck there. They know what life is like on the other side of the desk from where they are currently sitting.

    Anyway thanks for this, I thought the writing was excellent too.

  23. You are too polite. The right sign for the job centres is now “Arbeit Macht Frei”

  24. Tom Speed says:

    Great article, thank you.

  25. Daisy Walker says:

    Dear Wee Ginger Dug,

    As ever, ye didnea miss. I love the fact that you get angry in all the right places and then surgically dissect the why’s of it. You shine a very bright light into dark places and manage to communicate this and leave your readers with hope. Yir some boy:)

    I would like to donate to you again, but at this time I’ve just sent the allotted amount to the Ppl v Carmichael. It’s been speculated that the Big Liar is going to try and wear them out for money with delaying tactics. I think that’s a certainty – so, pennies in the jar for them, I’ll be donating again and again and again if it helps them not loose their houses. Talk about BRAVE.

    I understand they can’t disclose too much information with a live case on the go, but from a personnal interest perspective I’d love to ‘meet’ them. Don’t know if you might be passing that way any time soon. Obviously them MSM won’t. Also their design on the Indegogo site is fab, I want it on a T shirt, and for a car sticker pls.

    Dear Fiona, I don’t know if this will help, but my thoughts are with you…. so hear goes…

    The Referendum was a sprint, all that marvellous energy, hope, inspiration, optimism, you could see the finishing line, and it was there, all for the taking.
    On the day of the NO, that changed. It is the long haul marathon now.
    I see some people getting very disheartened when they can’t see or feel the Referendum magic and energy any more. Well it’s different muscles, different training, different tactics now. And like any athlete, if we use the wrong ones we crash and burn.

    I think you are absolutely right when you say the UK is travelling a dangerous road, and its not just the UK. The Westmonster machine is into phase 2, Grind folk down and Troll them, Provoke, and Steal and Provoke again, and if it results in terrorism, well, there’s money for them in that, and they’re used to socialising in those circles.

    Through all this, I see an implacable, unchangeable determination, its not fancy, its not out there in a Carnaval atmosphere anymore. It’s changed tactics, battened down the hatches, stocked up the provisions and dug in. One heart beat at a time, one bit of decency at a time, always.

    And if its hope your after, well I’d love to give you that, but honestly things are going to get worse before they get better, and the betters not guaranteed. All I can say is – no-one does thruan like us and none of us are going away any time soon.

    Peace to all.

  26. Philip Allan says:

    Bravo! Well said and beautifully put! I’ve always thought having a safety net of Social Security to be a small price from those who can afford, to help those who, for whatever reason, are unable to provide for themselves or their families. It could be looked on as a sort of ‘insurance policy’ against, “there but by the grace of god..”. I prefer to think of it as being a proof of our humanity and civilisation. Even the least ‘civilised’ tribes found in the ‘darkest’ Amazonian rainforest have been found to care (AND CARE WELL!!) for their sick, their young, their old and their disabled. Are we in the UK to accept a climate in which we fall so far short of these standards? If so, WE are the bloody savages!

  27. chicthomson says:

    Talking of the guards at the concentration camps Grizzle McPuss….
    Where are the civil service unions.?

  28. Maureen Graham says:

    With you 100% Wee Ginger Dug. With me, this has been personal for a long time. How else do you deal with ‘depraved indifference’ by DWP!

  29. davy1600 says:

    Their is not a word I could disagree with, it is one of the most profound articles you have written. The fact that people asking for help and having to resort to the most extrime level it is humainly possible to do, are being offered advice on not to kill yersel by the very people they are asking for that help.

    It breaks this human’s heart.

    S O S, meant Save Our Souls, now perhaps Save our Scotland.

  30. Aucheorn says:

    I’ve now turned 73, just a few days ago. I first joined the SNP in 1959/60 because I believed in a “Free Scotland”.
    I’ve lapsed and rejoined a few times since then, as life got in the way but each time I rejoined the belief was stronger that an independent Scotland was what I wanted.
    As time moved on I became active in various branches of the party. I met real activists and learnt a lot from them.
    I used to be a “Fundamentalist” but the common sense approach of the “Gradualists” convinced me to to look at the journey a different way.
    My belief became a strong desire and a requirement for me to do all that I could to achieve Independence. An SNP Government in Edinburgh, not an Executive, was a big step on the road.

    At the beginning of my journey Independence would have been nice. When we got a true Scottish Government by a true Scottish party it became a requirement to allow us to be governed as we wish, by Scots for Scots.
    Now we have an unfettered Tory government in Westminster Independence has become a NECESSITY.

    When the next Independence Referendum comes, as it surely will, every Scot must look at the evidence for, the lies we have been told, the truth not the dirty tricks, and ignore the scaremongering, then their head will surely follow their heart and Scotland will become a normal country.

    • Nosliw Etak says:

      Scotland is not the only country with an unfettered Tory government the whole of Britain do, but Scotland does have more funding and free education

      • Aucheorn says:

        I’ll repeat what Macart and others have said “England decides how Britain is ruled” We want our government in Scotland to be Scottish NOT British. If that offend your wish to “all be in the shite together” then tough.

        I’ll quote Maconatrix, “Go and educate yourself Kate, then perhaps we can have an informed discussion with you.”, about Independence and self government.

      • Saor Alba says:

        You are completely uninformed Kate. Take the advice given in various quarters here and maybe then we can have an informed discussion.

  31. linda says:

    Does anyone proof read you ramblings as some of it does not make sense which made me stop reading. Where is your proof that Benefit Agency staff are being trained to deal with potential suicide cases.

    • Try this, Linda. Of course, it’s possible that the herald are lying, but then you’re getting into lalaland: http://www.heraldscotland.com/…/13620988._Suicide_guidanc…/… “[Call] workers – who insist they have had no formal training in the procedure – must “make some assessment on the degree of risk” by asking a series of questions.
      One section of the six-point plan, titled “gather information”, demands that staff allow claimants to talk about their intention to commit suicide.
      The call-centre workers, who earn between £15,000 and £17,000 a year, must “find out specifically what is planned, when it is planned for, and whether the customer has the means-to-hand”, according to the guidance seen by the Sunday Herald.”

    • “Does anyone proof read you ramblings…”

      Perhaps you should get someone to proof-read yours. Michelle Mone, perhaps? Or that Crazy Daisy guy at STV?

    • Maureen says:

      I would rather make a donation to Paul for his blog site, and read the truth, than pay the MSM to continue lying to me year after year!

    • Saor Alba says:

      Proof read your own Linda, before commenting on someone else’s words. The WGD’s words are anything but ramblings and he has a command of language that most people in this land would love to have. You are out on a limb here and Paul Braterman is kindly trying to help you out.

      • Dave Hansell says:

        Saor Alba,

        This may well be the same poster who has complained about Paul asking for donations, in a reply to the first comment on this thread.

        If this is the case it would seem reasonable to suggest a pattern based not on evidence and genuine concern or a desire to learn but simply a crass display of forelock tugging which actually strengthens the points Paul has made in this thread.

        If he were still alive today the late Milton Meyer would certainly have recognised this for what it is.

        • Saor Alba says:

          Agreed Dave. I noted the possible connection when I went back to the top to read again. Absolutely puerile comment from her (or him?).

    • Az says:

      Aye, Linda, “ramblings”, complaining about donations to the writer, anything else? You seem to be a bit confused. Do you have trouble reading as well as interpreting? What about reasoning, how do you do with that?
      It’s a rhetorical question of course; having read your comments thus far it’s simple to come to a conclusion which will be entirely accurate.

    • Lynn Blair says:

      Goodness. Do you realise the number of punctuation errors you’ve made in those two sentences? Evidently eloquent English is beyond your grasp – as, indeed, is a basic sense of humanity.

      Wonderful and important writing.

  32. They Quille’s are getting sharper,stick them in the Bastards.
    Great piece Paul , you hit the nail on the head every time.

  33. elainemcleodbryan says:

    “The comfortably off tsk their disapproval of your poverty”
    No, no they don’t. That is as wrong as saying, ‘all poor people are…’. Just as wrong.

    It’s dutifully pitting Scot against Scot, falling into the trap of doing the elite’s controlled media’s dirty work creating a ‘them and us’from ‘us’. All of us first, not if you’re ‘comfortably well off’.

    Scotland isn’t one large council estate, many are ‘comfortably off’ – and have a vote. How will they ever vote with us for Indy if we make them our enemy. The No side need not lift a finger. It had no argument last time and won.

    Comfortably off people are buying extra shopping for the food bank, volunteering and caring. The establishment media is delighted if you blame ‘rich’ people, it takes our eye off them, while we fight ourselves.

    The privileged establishment super rich elite are the enemy, not fellow Scots in a different wage bracket. That’s prejudice no different.

    • Az says:

      Your rather pedantic point would at least make a modicum of sense if the group you described was in fact the majority.

    • Alisdair Smith says:

      I think I probably fall into the category of ‘comfortably off’, but I don’t take any offence at Paul’s comments. He’s right, those people were all around me at work (my office overlooks George Square, and I was gobsmacked to overhear comments like ‘where’s a machine gun when you need one’ during one of the pre referendum Yes rallies, I kid you not) and there are plenty of them still. We do need to get some of them on side for next time, but part of that is reminding them what they are responsible for. A bit of guilt can be useful. Brilliant writing.

  34. Reblogged this on alasdair fraser and commented:
    An excellent and eloquent deconstruction of both the Tories complete apathy toward the British people and why the Labour party needs change. The use of language is also amazing.

  35. KnightAngel45 says:

    What can I say in reply to you dug…nothing except I agree with you 100% and feel things have to change for a better future for all…I stand with you brother ~ we MUST all stand firm together and get Indy for Scotland to grow, flourish & be more caring of its citizens x

  36. Kenneth G Coutts says:

    Well put. what a degradation of society, can we in any way empower communicate with those who have been sanctioned to not self harm but be given somewhere to contact others who can help in addition to collate the information against the DWP and local offices.
    For these departments to sanction people and yet do nothing to assist them after that point is a sad indictment on those people in these offices and what is at least their lack of humanity in helping, typical of neoliberalism and the dregs of a me me I am alright jack society, sickening!!

    • “a sad indictment on those people in these offices and what is at least their lack of humanity”; Those people in those offices are low waged semi-trained, and shit scared of finding themselves on the other side of the counter. Don’t blame them; blame the policy makers.

      • Az says:

        Absolutely spot-on. Their employment conditions have been continually eroded also.
        By and large the system worked and had humanity, right up until the amalgamation of Social Security offices and the old Job Centres.
        These people are by far the worst paid civil servants, working in the worst conditions. Their dream being just to get a similar job with the cooncil where they might get better pay and conditions.

  37. Maureen says:

    I would rather make a donation to Paul for his blog site, and read the truth, than pay the MSM to continue lying to me year after year!

  38. Scramel says:

    When you see people being treated like this by the state you can understand suicide bombers. If I got that low I’d make sure I took some of the bastards with me.

  39. Hazel Smith says:

    Paul, another masterpiece. I totally agree with everything you said. I wish I could say so as eloquently as some of the others on here, but nonetheless I wholeheartedly felt the raw emotion coming through in your piece. Thanks again.

  40. Steve Carroll says:

    I agree wholeheartedly with the sentiments in WGD’s article. I am not so sure that the answer lies in Scottish independence. I do not wish for Scotland to pull up the drawbridge and abandon the poor and dispossessed in England without giving the Corbynite faction of the Labour party a chance to resurrect socialism in England. I understand why New Labour sprang into existence in the first place, and the blame lies partly in the selfishness of a portion of the English electorate who voted to keep what wealth they had without voting Tory. The present Labour Party must re-embrace socialism and I believe that there is a large slice of the English middle class who would vote for a party of principle. If the Labour party cannot go back to their roots, it may then be time to embrace Scottish independence. The SNP are not without their faults and include both left and right in their support. It will not be easy, but Scottish Labour must return to socialism, and surely there must be huge support in Scotland waiting for this to happen?

    • Fiona says:

      Steve that argument is normally short handed “those poor geordies”. It is also present in a strand of the left wing which used to tell women and other groups that we would get to their problems, once the battle was won. Meantime, kindly wait.

      There is no logic to suggesting Scotland is “pulling up the drawbridge”: Like sisters, the dispossessed in England can do it for themselves. It is beyond arrogant to suggest otherwise. Nor do we have any reason or responsibility to continue to harm ourselves in solidarity with them. That is not a sense of solidarity I can even recognise.

      If Scotand achieves independence, and if it subsequently establishes a more socially just society, that has more chance of helping the dispossessed elsewhere, that sitting around sharing their misery. It will demonstrate things don’t have to be this way.

      To be sure the examples are there in the nordic countries: but unsurprisingly, we don’t hear much about those cos it might give us ideas. If Scotland can emulate them English people WILL hear about it, because we have family there. That kind of information is not easy to suppress

      I agree that there are a great many scots who would prefer to realise those goals within the UK: they were slow to recognise that labour is dead, as the party they supported. Those who left, did so with regret, and some have not done so even yet.

      If the UK labour party returns to its roots I am sure many will return to support for them. I do not think that will happen this time, for the party has been stolen and the entryists will fight tooth and nail to prevent it. But it will happen some time. I have no doubt of that: whether within labour or outside it and under another name.

      But the strong strand of “internationalism” which made that the desired outcome is irrational in a socialist tradition which also support the autonomy of peoples across the world. That inherent contradiction is obvious once you see it, and there is nothing in that same autonomy which undermines solidarity. A whole world government is not realistic: even if you want it it is quite literally impossible, because there would have to be local levels of government below it. And that being so then the place to draw those lines is where people find them useful.

      The union is not useful. Even if a socialist labour party rose like a phoenix and swept all before it all across the UK that would not change. Away with it

  41. Maureen says:

    Enough, People are dying because of benifit sanctions. Even 1 death is 1 too many.Even one person considering suicide is a step to far.

  42. gavin C Barrie says:

    Reference Carmichael vs the people:

    The rich are rich because they treasure money, we need to have them realise, like poker, we will see them and raise, again and again. So whether it is Carmichael funding his defence by himself, or supported by rich friends, or the State by some underhand means, the message has to be, we will not fold.

    The four have been brave, we must support them. And dare the State to be found funding Carmichael.

  43. Monti says:

    Nobody gives a fuck about anybody, it’s a dogfight from birth to death, the poor will always be poor and the rich will get richer…..it’s all a fucking game and complete waste of time.

    Money is worse than evil!

    P.S.
    Sevco.

  44. Bill Hume says:

    I cannot agree with Steve Carrol………and here’s why.

    1 Will Corbyn be elected leader of the Labour Party?

    2 Even if he is leader, how long will he last as such, with so many (Labour) hands ready to plunge the dagger between his shoulder blades?

    3. How far left can he drag a reluctant group of MPs?

    4. Can he win an election and actually change the British electoral system?

    5. Even if he manages all that, how long will it be before the Tories are returned to power and undo anything he might achieve?

    There are too many fences to fall at for my liking, although I wish the man well.

    • Dave Hansell says:

      There is also another point which is the context in which all this is taking place.

      The point about democracy, whether it is within the UK/Britain or an independent Scotland, is that within that geographical and cultural space the demos decides. It decides it’s priorities and policies; it decides it’s economic priorities; the mix of public and private; it’s own regulations pertaining to how it conducts it’s business within its space, creating laws and regulations governing the standards of everything from employment law, food standards ( what can and cannot be put in foodstuff for consumption by humans and animals), environmental protection, public health, health and safety at work, employment protection, minimum and living wage rates, banking regulation, terms of trade and a whole raft of similar means for how the society from which the demos springs can operate, function and live effectively and in harmony.

      If the demos cannot do any of these things it is neither a demos nor is it Independent.

      The point being that the ability of the demos to decide in this way is seriously under threat. At present trade negotiations between the EC and the US are taking place known as the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Protocol. Most people have never heard of it because it is taking place behind closed doors between unelected commissioners and corporate lobbyists. One of the fundamental innocuous sounding aims is to harmonise standards and deregulate what are referred to as trade barriers, which is another way of saying that the standards set for regulating what is listed above will be the lowest common denominator.

      For example, Corporate industry lobbyists from the US are pressing the EU to lift it’s ban on anti biotic growth hormones in meat products, as well as other EU banned substances used in animal feed (the sort that produced mad cow disease etc). The right to free collective bargaining and trade union recognition does not exist in the US in the same way it exists in the EU. Consequently the negotiations to lift these so called “trade barriers” in Europe are also on the agenda.

      Right across the spectrum of decision making by the demos is up for grabs here. But it gets worse because part of the agreement, not yet signed off, are provisions to allow Corporate entities and private investor groups to sue Governments and public bodies ( if there are any left) for potential lost profits should that Government (or public body) enact any law or regulation which might affect those potential future profits. This would take place in a secret court with Corporate lawyers, no public or democratic representation, or any provision whatsoever for public or social interest.

      The tobacco giant Phillip Morris has already sued the Australian Government, taking a large chunk of taxpayers money in the process, for loss of potential profit arising from Government legislation to introduce plain tobacco packaging. The Japanese Government has also been sued by a Swedish company over its decision to phase out nuclear power following its nuclear accident recently. Both under similar trade agreements to TTIP. This does not bode well for the demos of any State which, for example, seeks to re nationalise any privatised part of whole of the NHS in the future. Or railways. Or seek to produce less expensive generic drugs for the benefit of its population. Or prevent the use of harmful substances in its food; require proper food labelling; enact environmental protection laws which prevent fracking etc.

      In effect what is occurring here is that the rights of Corporations to extract profit at any cost are being prioritised above the rights of everyone else. Any action by the demos at any level to interfere with this prime right will result in a fine to cover the potential lost profit.

      The point being that it matters not if Corbyn or Kermit the Frog is elected leader of the Labour Party. Nor does it matter if Scotland becomes independent of the UK. If this goes through no one will be independent. The demos will be a complete and utter waste of time because the right of large Corporations and private investor groups to extract maximum profit will trump everything else. If you cannot enforce your own laws and regulations in the interests of the society of which you are a part than regardless of where you are you are not independent and you have no demos. Effectively you, me and everyone else will be classed as Atimia.

      • Fiona says:

        What you say about TTIP is true. But an independent Scotland can withdraw from participation, and despite what they tell you the corporates are only as powerful as we believe them to be or allow them to be. They don’t make the law as of right: they buy it if we let them. We are not quite a plutocracy yet: though well on the way.

        It is true that if any country challenges their hegemony they will do all in their power to prevent it: for one example will show they have no clothes and the game is up. So I expect the road to be very hard: but there is this. We did it before after WW2. Not completely (see my earlier post) but at least to an extent we could all live with. That means we can do it again.

        • Dave Hansell says:

          On the basis that prevention is better than cure it would seem reasonable to put forward the proposition that it would be a less painful situation if that position is not reached, ie TTIP etc is not signed.

          Having said that it also needs to be recognised that TTIP is an example of those very corporate entities writing and making the law and too many people are not only comfortable with that but wish to protect their ignorance of the facts, reality and implications of what is taking place.

          What you say about what an independent demos can do in such a situation may well be the case and as long as everyone involved comprehends the meaning and policy choice implications of that there may well be room for manoeuvre.

          And it is here where the context as well as the content is relevant. TTIP is taking place at at European level outside of democratic input, let alone control. If signed off and implemented this means that all member states of the EU are bound by it. It is here where timing comes into play.

          If the assumption is made that TTIP is signed off, agreed and implemented The next question which comes into play is will this occur before or after a second independence referendum in Scotland and the EC membership referendum in the UK?

          If it is signed off before both of these events than independence supporters in Scotland need to be clear about what that means. Firstly, if the UK referendum results in a UK majority to pull out of the EU with a Scottish majority to stay in the current policy of the SNP is, as far as I understand it, to use that situation to drive a second independence referendum in Scotland on the grounds that it wishes to remain an EU member state. To do so Scotland will have two choices, to accept membership as it will stand at that juncture, ie including the terms of the TTIP, or to attempt to negotiate as part of it membership application an opt out from TTIP. That will either be successful or it will be unsuccessful. If unsuccessful this means that membership will not be accepted on the basis of an opt out from TTIP leaving Scotland, the SNP and Independence supporters with the choice of EU membership under the TTIP terms or no EU membership whatsoever.

          If the UK referendum opts to stay in the EU than until a second Independence referendum in Scotland occurs Scotland will be stuck with TTIP because there is no way the current UK Westminster Establishment would consider opting out of TTIP. Indeed, even if the the result was to pull out of the EU it is reasonable to surmise that there is every liklihood that the UK establishment would negotiate a trade deal on its own barely indistinguishable from the TTIP provisions.

          Now if TTIP is signed off after a successful Scottish Independence referendum and subsequent successful membership application for EU membership than once it is signed off the scenario of trying to negotiate an opt out re presents itself with precisely the same logical choices and potential outcomes.

          Now as long as that is widely and generally understood by those of us, whether we live in Scotland or like myself outside, who wish to to see an Independent Scotland, what is and is not possible within that context in terms of policy options and strategies to achieve that Independence becomes clearer. One area of clarity being that once TTIP is signed off it complicates the current policy strategy of an Independent Scotland in Europe simply because signing up to a Europe under TTIP would be jumping out of the frying pan into the fire. The logic means the Independence supporters and their elected representatives need to radically rethink their current strategy options and policies if they are going to accept that TTIP is signed off as part of the context in which they are operating.

          As I said at the beginning. Prevention is the better option.

          • Fiona says:

            Don’t disagree with any of that. I personally do not wish to be a part of the EU and that is a view I have come to slowly and reluctantly. I was very much in favour of the european ideal, and retained some hope that the social democratic thread would be strong enough to contain the plutocrats enough to make the project worthwhile. It isn’t and the EU has been captured by the neoliberals. The final demonstration was the approach to Greece, though that was just the tin lid.

            Similarly, but for much much longer, I consider that Scotland absolutely requires a sovereign currency of its own and so I oppose the current policy of sharing Sterling.

            I think it is well known that many SNP voters (such as myself) have fundamental and important differences with the party, of that sort. But those are arguments for after independence. As you seem to agree, we cannot even begin to address them while in the union.

  45. Jimmy the pict says:

    I don’t agree with you article title

    The Tories are heartless evil bastards.

  46. I cannot believe anyone on here is criticising WGD for having a “donate button”.

    The clue is in the word people – DONATE – “making a gift, grant or contribution to something”. It’s voluntary!

    If any of you had even 5 minutes to spare you might want to go back to the beginning, read WGD’s story, see what he has been through.

    It’s a “good cause” I am happy to donate to as and when I can – I have done so in the past, I will do so in the future.

    It really scunners me how anyone thinks a creative talent should give away their work for free. You wouldn’t expect a joiner, plumber or electrician to do their work for nothing so why expect a writer, musician, painter or film maker to do so?

    If what WGD writes upsets you or doesn’t meet your needs and wants then move on and go read something else (and if that something else is being given away for free be grateful).

    Do you think WGD is loaded? Do you think he just writes for fun because he is so well off in terms of time and money he has nothing better to do whilst sitting in his roof top hot tub over looking the Thames?

    You don’t have to donate but you have absolutely no right to criticise those of us who do or WGD for asking.

    • Grizzle McPuss says:

      Here here.
      Go read my comment about those who live with every penny as a prisoner. They want it all…they want it now…but don’t ask them to contribute anything. God forbid no…there’s bling in them thar hills to buy.

    • Pam McMahon says:

      Well said Steve. Agree 100% with everything you said. And thanks WGD for another outstanding article. You seem to have poked a sharp stick into a lot of ill-informed unionist trollers with this one. Gaun yersel

    • macart763M says:

      Wot you said. 🙂

  47. Jacqueline Gallacher says:

    Paul, I regularly share your blog on Bella Caledonia FB group and it is always gets the more re-shares than anything else.

  48. You hit the nail on the head, as usual Paul. Can I just split one wee ginger hair though, since you mention the importance of language (‘social security’ vs ‘welfare’)? I ask you not to use the term ‘committed suicide’. The verb to commit is normally used for a crime. While suicide was decriminalised years ago, the continued use of the verb reflects a equation of suicide with sin or wrongdoing, and this helps to sustain the sense of ‘taboo’ that still hampers us from talking about it. A more acceptable verb is ‘to complete suicide’, reflecting the fact that suicide is the end of a process which, until its completion, can be stopped.

    Aside from that, keep up the great work!

    • Morag says:

      Suicide has never been a crime in Scotland, and thus it was never decriminalised in Scotland. One more example of the misconceptions the England-centric media we’re stuck with leave us believing.

  49. jcd says:

    They don’t like it up ’em do they? Well done WGD, I don’t visit this blog every day so this is the first time I’ve seen anything resembling a concerted troll attack on here, either that or just a couple of clueless britnat morons way out of their depth, and I’ve not seen much of that on here either.

    Whatever, keep up your excellent work WGD, you’re pressing the right buttons. Unionist liars and ignorant fools alike hate it, it’s like exposing vampires to the light. Those just starting to explore the issues and who have any kind of an open mind will be enlightened by it.

  50. bowanarrow says:

    WOW, their is no other word for this piece.

  51. JohnMWhite says:

    I try hard to think of elegant and expressive words, to craft the perfect phrase. But then sometimes I just think – the Tories are fucking bastards.

    Fear not, you went ahead and crafted the perfect phrase anyway.

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