Writers of fantasy dressed up as news

Here we go again. Earlier this week the accusation surfaced for the umpteenth time that the campaign for Scottish independence is characterised by anti-English racism. The accusation was made by a notorious Twitter attention seeker and spanneroid, who occasionally poses as a journalist, in an attempt to deflect some criticisms made about an English-born fantasy author that he spends much of his online time sooking up to. Clearly, the only reason a Scottish person can have for criticising someone born in England is that they are English, even when the person doing the criticising is a well known figure on the Scottish radical left who has a proven track record in challenging discrimination, inequality and social injustice.

The author concerned already has a free pass from criticism as far as the Scottish media is concerned. She’s surrounded by a coterie of fanboys, and they are all boys, who hang on to her every word and treat her weak jokes like great witticisms, then plaster them all over their failing newspapers as news.

The Scottish Unionist media’s estimation of wit is directly proportional to the amount of money and media contacts a person has. Star struck fanboydom is essentially harmless, what’s harmful is the way in which the fanboys attempt to determine and deform the public agenda. What’s especially harmful is the way in which they’re attempting to stoke the fires of racism in order to deny that the Unionist cause in Scotland is in any way responsible for the growing demand for independence.

Few would deny the existence of anti-English sentiment in Scotland. It does exist, just as its counterpart of anti-Scottish sentiment exists in England. What is very noticeable however is the difference in attention and import given to the respective racisms. Anti-English racism in Scotland is, according to the Unionist mediaspanners, a vicious canker that deforms the very heart of the Scottish psyche and is the driving motor of the Scottish independence campaign. Anti-Scottish racism in England, according to the same media fanboys, either doesn’t exist or is just a bit of banter that only a jock with a chip firmly nailed to their shoulder could possibly object to. Get you, ya thin skinned cybernat, can you not take a joke?

The people who make such a great play of anti-English racism in Scotland don’t just deny the existence of anti-Scottish racism in England. They are also the very same individuals who go to inordinate lengths to deny the existence of anything distinctive about Scottish culture. They’re the people who deny that Gaelic has anything at all to do with the Lowlands, even though they have Gaelic surnames and live in Lowland towns where Gaelic place names litter the landscape. They’re the people who refuse to acknowledge that it was the use of the Gaelic language which created Scotland as a nation, that without Gaelic there would be no Scotland. But then they don’t really want Scotland to exist as a nation, so of course they deny Gaelic’s true role.

They’re the people who deny that Scots is a language, and assert that it’s just a deformation of English which is an embarrassment to write. They claim that using Scots like a normal language is politicising it and that’s bad and evil. The real politicisation of Scots is the refusal to allow it to be employed for the full range of uses of any normal language. The real politicisation of Scots is the refusal to accept that it’s a language even though its status as such is an accepted and uncontroversial part of the academic linguistic consensus. Yet the flat earthers of linguistics still dominate the debate. It’s like giving creationists a hearing in a discussion about evolution. We’re still waiting for the Scots version of the puggy trial.

They’re the people who don’t want Scotland to have a national broadcaster because they think Scotland is parochial and inward looking. That means that the Scottish Unionist media is possibly the only one on Earth which denies that it’s capable of reporting to its own audience. How can Scotland’s own media possibly mediate directly with the rest of the world? We need a London perspective to make sense of this confusing planet, otherwise we’d just get lost and confused in our wee tartan Brigadoon. A Scottish perspective is delegitimised. It’s fine with them that Scots know more about the English education system or health service than they do about the Scottish ones, because it suits the Unionist parties to conflate devolved and reserved matters during Scottish elections. They deny that Westminster control of broadcasting had any role to play in the referendum campaign, but want to deny Scottish control because they claim that would play a role in a future campaign.

They’re the people who deny that Scotland has a distinctive political culture. They’re perfectly happy if the EU referendum comes immediately on top of the Scottish Parliamentary elections. Then UKIP will get far more publicity in the UK media than its Scottish presence warrants, and that in turn will feed into an increased vote for the right wing extremists of Unionism in the Scottish elections. Then the apologists for Westminster rule will crow that Scots voters aren’t left wing after all.

Having spent so much time and energy denying that there is anything distinctive about Scotland, the only explanation left to them for the existence of the Scottish nation is that it’s founded in a hatred of the English. This makes Scotland the only country in the world which exists purely due to a wilful refusal to be a part of another country. The denial of a Scottish identity is intimately related to the espousal of anti-English racism as the explanation for Scottish nationalism. If there is no content to a Scottish identity, all that can be left is a hatred for England that is never explained. What is the cause and reason for this anti-English racism that is the sole defining characteristic of Scotland? The Westminions never say. They have no answer to the questions that their own arguments raise.

The reality is that it’s the shortcomings of the Unionist settlement which are feeding the demand for Scottish self-determination. Alleging anti-English racism as a reason for Scottish self-determination isn’t an attempt to inform or elucidate. It’s the reverse. It’s an attempt close down discussion and delegitimise one side in an argument. It panders to the anti-Scottish racism of the English right, giving them spurious reasons to justify the hatred that is spewed all over the pages of the Mail and the Telegraph. It stokes up racism in an attempt to score a cheap point, it cheapens and tarnishes those who use it as an argument. But then the proponents of Scottish Unionism are cheap and tarnished already, writers of fantasy dressed up as news.

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56 comments on “Writers of fantasy dressed up as news

  1. Jan Cowan says:

    You always re-arrange the jigsaw pieces to make a complete picture and absolute sense.

    I’m so thankful you’re here for us, Paul.

  2. BampotsUtd.wordpress.com says:

    Reblogged this on Bampots Utd.

  3. Archie Maclean says:

    Paul in para 4 I think u meant to say Anti Scottish racism in England…

  4. Archie Maclean says:

    Its ok now.

  5. […] Writers of fantasy dressed up as news […]

  6. Hazel Smith says:

    What would we do without you wee dug. You just put everything into perspective and for that we thank you.

  7. macart763 says:

    Well said Paul.

    Gotta say, I’m getting well fed up with people who know sod all about me, telling me who I am, what I believe in and why I vote the way I do.

  8. davidbsb says:

    If you speak to any of our Asian community who have lived in Northern England, you will hear how “funny” the xenophobia of the “Brit” can be,

    I find I have an issue with colonialist attitudes – such as those expressed recently by the “author we cannot name”. I know many English people who are here because they love the place and the people. They are welcome. But Scotland is not little England. If someone hankers after the Raj it may be better if they considered their position. Scotland is going to become independent soon.

  9. Patience is a Virtue says:

    Hmm….more junk mail through my letterbox…

    “Help Jackson & Ruth hold the SNP to account and say no to a second referendum – Vote Scottish Conservatives.

    In September 2014 Eastwood delivered one of the most decisive No votes in the Scottish Referendum. Shamefully the First Minister began 2016 declaring her intention to make a fresh case for Independence. Eastwood needs a strong voice to counter SNP plans for another Referendum, not a megaphone for a ‘neverendum.’

    Only the Scottish Conservatives will stand for a strong Scotland in a great Britain. Only the Scottish Conservatives will provide a genuine Scottish opposition at Holyrood. This May use both votes for the Scottish Conservatives – a strong voice for Eastwood and stronger opposition at Holyrood led by Ruth Davidson

    …keeping the UK safe, backing strong Defence and securing your paypacket against higher Income Tax”

    Is Income Tax going up ?? – not to the detriment of any part of the UK I hope – as we had that Smith Commission thingy … is this possibly Westminster increasing our taxes to counter EVEL Conservative austerity plans voted in by the Conservatives/Labour…

    That chap Jim Murphy (Labour), used to be, our MP – who favoured Dependence, where is he now? …oh yes Kirsten Oswald is now our MP… the SNP MP for Eastwood.

    ..roll on May….looking forward to it.. yes, ….we know exactly how it works,, we get two votes this time.

    • MeMyself&I says:

      Check out the Scottish govts own GERS figures. We are dependant on pooling & sharing to cover our costs. Black & white. Even Bell agreed white paper was a fiction.

    • As resident of Stamperland I too received the latest junkmail guff from Jackson Carlaw. Aside from the usual dross which I’ve come to expect what particularly irked me from the contents was Carlaw’s blatant use of the “anti-semitism” card.

      There just doesn’t seem be a level below which Carlaw, or the Conservative Party in general, will refuse to go in terms of distorting issues for his / their own self serving ends

      • Patience is a Virtue says:

        and ‘A Personal Message from Ruth Davidson’:-

        “The Scottish Parliament Election is our chance to say NO to a second referendum and get the SNP to focus on running the country.”

        So you heard it here first…. Ruth herself appears to be anticipating an SNP win (and we haven’t even had the postal votes yet) .. and is apparently quite happy for the SNP to jolly well get on with running the country..she presumably is satisfied they have been doing a pretty reasonable job date (given the limited devolved powers / funds at the Country’s disposal).

        … if only some of that wealth sucked into SE Albion could be pooled and shared….pooling – yes but for some reason they are never so keen on the sharing bit…. no change there then.

        Not much mention of Labour / Liberals this time in campaign leafltes .. ..not so better together together anymore obviously.

  10. Dan Huil says:

    Britnats are really scraping the barrel now. In a way it’s a good sign – their desperation is blindingly obvious.

  11. Pietro_McM says:

    Well worth a read.

    Lived down South for years before I moved to the Continent. Assumptions were often made based on what people what people found convenient to believe, rather than the way things actually were. The modern UK media appears to be there simply to reinforce those assumptions, rather than to question them.

    Sums things up very concisely. Thanks.

  12. Platinum says:

    The thing that annoys me so much about these so called anti-English accusations is the sheer arrogance of it, as if we in Scotland have nothing else to think about except our southern neighbours. Within this accursed Union we’re simply not allowed to define anything on our own terms. No doubt I will be accused of anti-Englishness for simply thinking that.

  13. I have no idea how many of the hundreds of people I have spoken to since we started canvassing in September use social media as a means of communication, all I know is not one has ever mentioned the author we must not name.
    But it goes further than that. Since the allegations about Thomson/McGarry were publicised, I have encountered only one voter, and he was all for the S.N.P, who even mentioned their names, and that was only to enquire if I knew if any action was going to be taken against them.
    So they, the Westminster establishment, aided by their media allies, can, and undoubtedly will, continue their demonising of us independence supporters, but, and it’s a big but, it’s not working, at least for a sizeable number of the electorate.
    The days when the Scottish people meekly accepted the word of persons who seem to think they know what’s good for us has long gone, and by that I mean authors’, so-called journalists, former M.Ps and anyone else who sees fit to abuse our perfectly normal desire to govern our own country, and control our own destiny.
    What I really feel about these people, and what I consider them to be, I will keep to myself, as I have no wish to descend to their level, but my hope is they will get their comeuppance, come independence.

    • MeMyself&I says:

      The majority of the ‘Scottish people’ voted ‘no’. You regard yourself as meek & downtrodden if you must. Not something which means anything to me but maybe I am lacking the paranoid factor. Also not yet part of any hive mindset.

      • kailyard rules says:

        A slim majority voted No and much of that on last minute mendacious panic strewn promises, a betrayal of purdah, and a desecration of postal votes.
        You might not consider yourself a part of any hive mindset ,but how can you with your head buried in the sand.

        • Jenny Gunning says:

          Still waiting to hear why anyone voted NO! No-one can explain it, any more than they can provide me with Tory/Labour/LibDem policies. Personally, I vote for policies, rather than from fear or from habit. Probably that makes me a moonie or a hive dweller in some people’s eyes but I have no particular use for those people and don’t understand them anyway. My personal views are Anit-Trident, anti-Austerity and green. I believe the government should work for the people and not the other way around!

      • Soar Alba says:

        It sounds to me that it I is you who are meek and downtrodden. This ‘paranoid’ claim is thrown by you and others like you when you have no argument. You have been spotted. Troll!

      • Patience is a Virtue says:

        Don’t drone on about it.

  14. Proud Cybernat says:

    Brilliantly done, WGD. JKR–take note.

  15. David Agnew says:

    They are the yoons. They revel in their poverty of spirit and aspiration. Britishness is a magic cloak that hides their hideous Scottish identity. Anyone who spurns this magic cloak and only do so out of hatred of the English, who define and shape Britishness. They its nothing to be ashamed of to be dependent on someone bigger, better and richer that you.

    Well – we could say that. It sort of fits. In truth they’re fanboys. They are fanboys of Britishness. And when it gets questioned, mocked or maligned. You’re questioning their investment in it. And when a fanboy gets mad – woah – they let their passion for what you have rejected, overwhelm their social graces and they let you have it with both barrels.

    The English have nothing to do with this (maybe thats were a lot of anger lies as well). My concern is that Scotland is simply a hostage to fortune in this Union. The UK is heading for another bad fall, and I see no reason for Scotland to tag along for the ride.

    It is not, as some yoons suggest, our moral duty to vote labour. It’s not Scotland’s duty to be the UKs moral compass, anymore than it is Scotland’s sacred purpose to provide the UK labour party with a spine. Our votes have to count for something – they can’t count for nothing. In the indy ref, i realised that Scotland’s voice only counts when it swallows it pride and votes to be represented by the Scottish branch of an English party. It’s not anti-English or racist to point out how inherently unfair and ridiculous that state of affairs is.

    This union has ran on for too long for what little good it achieved. It’s not working. Time to leave.
    Thats not anti-english, its just common sense.

  16. hettyforindy says:

    Well said, again, a good read Paul.
    Just one thing, regards the ‘anti Scottish racism of the English right’, that in my experience extends to many of the traditional english left. They would not see it as racism, but the contempt and ridicule from them in my own experience, towards Scotland, in particular regards the Independence supporters, and the SNP government is a bit of a concern.

    When I was brought up in NE england, we nearly always had holidays in Scotland, when the family could afford the odd holiday, and for us it was intriguing, because we were in a different country, with lovely accents and great things to see and do.

    Now, it seems that there is a certain amount of disdain, due to the myths about devolution, they really don’t have a clue and that’s exactly what the britnat establishment want and pander to.

  17. Papadox says:

    Well done Paul your a star. I am not and never have been a racist nor anti English, However if these muppets insist on me being anti English then take it as read must do what the English tell us! I am still not a racist and never will be. I h*** yoons!

  18. Neil Gr says:

    That was a damn fine article, and only partly because it articulates my own previously ineffable feelings. During the referendum I spoke to several people with Scottish accents who said to me independence was just about hatred of the English. At the time I never thought to say (cos I was trying to win hearts, not start fights) that they were stoking up a fire of bitterness if they really wanted to stand by a statement that basically said that if you are pro independence, you are a racist/xenophobe/bigot. Would I have improved the situation by retorting, well if you are against indy you are a narrow minded British nationalist who thinks Scotland is full of wasters and neds and is only kept in the modern era by the elites in the south of England? Yes, there are some anti-English bigots, but sadly there are quite a number of the Britnats described above. Where does it get us to fling this mud? I tell you where it gets me: more motivated that I was before to destroy the UK state as it currently exists (eh, the word ‘destroy’ is kind of rhetorical/stylistic by the way, before anyone calls the police, or the Queen).

  19. arthur thomson says:

    You put our feelings into words as per normal. Thank you.

  20. Scott Borthwick says:

    Fantastic stuff. Many thanks for this.

    One line in particular stand out for me: “… the only explanation left to them for the existence of the Scottish nation is that it’s founded in a hatred of the English.”

    I’ve heard this one before. A word of warning. If you hear it yourself, stand well back before politely pointing out that the Scottish nation predates the English. At this point, their heads usually explode.

  21. Polscot says:

    All of this anti-English sentiment that the Westminions and their press buddies are experiencing, that is in large part in their own minds and a fundamental part of their own xenophobia. The “othering” of people who challenge their hegemony. Needy much? Are they not feeling loved? Did I forget to send a Valentine’s card? Should I hug a spanner, or spare a dime for a Jakey charity, even if she/it is tRolling while demanding a sizeable donation from critics under threats of legal action?

    I always find your writing is spot on, WGD, and enlightens my own interpretation of the colonial media messages.

    Is being anti-East European or anti-Syrian the same as being pro-English?

  22. ScotsCanuck says:

    A very rich & concise article, Paul, which is totally in phase with my own beliefs.

    It is indeed a pleasure to read your thoughts and insights on our political journey, all I can say is
    more power tae yer pen !!

    Vive le petit Ginger chien.

  23. Saor Alba says:

    Went to see the film ‘The Big Short’ tonight. Brilliant portrayal of the corruption of the bankers and friends. Thoroughly recommended.

  24. […] Source: Writers of fantasy dressed up as news […]

  25. lanark says:

    This is the best article I have read about our “media”. You have summed them up perfectly. More power to your keyboard!

  26. Jenny Gunning says:

    Thank you this is wonderful as ever. Smoke and mirrors. How many people I wonder are actually intelligent enough to see through this to the other side? And confident enough to believe it, and act on it. Most people I fear will succumb to apathy, and that is what it counts on.

  27. Steve says:

    I have lived in London for 12 years and now Spain first 15. On numerous occasions I have asked friends and acquaintances not to refer to Scots as Jocks. Every time I have been told it’s just a friendly term and that I shouldn’t be so chippy. I always say that Scots never use the term themselves and that I have never met a Scot who likes the term.

    • Kenzie says:

      I don’t know what it’s like now, of course, but when I was in the Army it was quite common for COs of Scottish Regiments to refer to the men under their command as “my Jocks”.

  28. Superb piece Paul.

    And here’s a wee tune for all those of incredible wealth who demean themselves with the trivia of whining of Twitter:

  29. Tinto Chiel says:

    “They are the yoons. They revel in their poverty of spirit and aspiration. Britishness is a magic cloak that hides their hideous Scottish identity. Anyone who spurns this magic cloak and only do so out of hatred of the English, who define and shape Britishness.”

    Well said, David Agnew. I’m sure we all know, and despair of, people like this. Unfortunately most of them are quite unreachable under their UKOKian carapace. Remember George Robertson and his “We have no language or culture” claptrap? And they called US brainwashed during the Yes campaign!

    And Paul, another great post. One of the reasons I enjoy this site is that you have an excellent knowledge of Scotland’s linguistic history and are not afraid to use it to demolish our opponents. Unfortunately, their almost complete ignorance on this topic does not stop them from commenting extensively on it, a marker of the Establishment’s arrogance and ignorance.

  30. Helena Brown says:

    I have to say that Anti English Racism is stoked by those in England, they patronise when speaking or writing to Scots, they denigrate that which they know nothing about. All they do know is that they hate just about every body not just the folk they share this island with but just about the whole world, well only a few countries left for them to invade and it will be a clean sweep. Therefore if to be an English Nationalist means you hate everyone therefore the Scots (who feel to be their inferior) hate them.
    Thankfully Paul your good self and many many others deal with this subject with humour as do those who encounter it on twitter. The bitterness of the No voter is clear to see, they one the first battle or as I prefer, the first skirmish, but they know in the end they will lose the war.

    • macart763M says:

      Y’know, when this latest stooshie (see under luvvies click baiting) occurred, I had the same reaction as our host. I even started a post and by the time I’d finished?…. Oh it had links and facts, and quotes, I’d even gone to the bother of sourcing images n’sich. If I could, I’d have added animations, dancing monkeys, fireworks, the cast of FAME (we’re gonna live forever), the lot. 😀

      Then I paid my daily visit, saw Paul’s post and binned it. 😀 LOL

      I think we should be done explaining ourselves to the media, politicians, luvvies and celebs. We owe them precisely nothing and if they haven’t been paying attention over the past four years, or can’t be bothered to get off their well paid arses to ask folk directly, then its their loss.

      As for hate merchants wherever they are?

      Let them go Helena, they’re not worth the candle. 🙂

  31. Helena Brown says:

    DAsh it I need to proof read, should read they won the first battle or skirmish.

  32. Slightly O/T but isn’t it strange that when someone with money, power and influence calls out or puts down an ordinary Twitter user it’s a “flawless, perfect response” but when an ordinary Twitter user calls out or puts down someone with money, power and influence it’s trolling?

  33. The Scottish Play says:

    ‘Without Gaelic there would be no Scotland.’

    Friday’s National ran with the start of Gaelic (Scots Gaelic) and other languages now available in Google Translate.

    There may have been some ‘mixed reviews’ for this but it is in its infancy and asks for contributions from speakers/users to improve the system as it goes forward but this is probably the most significant step in actually preserving and augmenting the use of Gaelic.

    Try typing in the Gaelic text (page 7 of the National) into the translator and works pretty well … being able to translate sentences, and paragraphs! rather than just indiviual words in on-line dictionaries or thumbing through a hard copy Gaelic dictionary is a giant leap in the right direction.
    As a learner, you will still need that dictionary to get the word but this system is going to make the process of learning infinitely easier and now available to anyone who is interested – worldwide.

    Who knows, it may even become available and actually encouraged in Scottish schools.

  34. jcd says:

    Helena Brown 10.09am

    “… everyone therefore the Scots (who feel to be their inferior) hate them.”

    Not quite sure if you meant that but speak for yourself, I don’t feel inferior to them and I’m pretty sure I’m not alone.

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