You probably know that last weekend Derek Bateman and I were the subjects of an article by Mike Small in Bella Caledonia. Mike attacked us for failing, in his eyes, to show sufficient criticism of the Scottish Government and the SNP. I felt that Mike’s article was unfriendly, unconstructive, unhelpful, and represented a fundamental misunderstanding of my position. I expect such attacks from Unionists, for it to come from another independence supporter was unwelcome, to say the least.
I wasn’t going to reply to the Bella Caledonia piece, but in the light of yesterday’s understandably vituperative rejoiner from Derek Bateman on his blog, I feel the need to make a brief comment.
Since the indyref I have made no secret of the fact that my targets are Scotland’s Unionist establishment and the Westminster parliament. The reason I do not criticise the policies of the Scottish Government or the SNP is the exact same reason that I do not criticise the policies of RISE or the Greens. Scotland’s online media operates in an environment in which we are heavily out-gunned by the Unionist mainstream in terms of resources, access, and public penetration. There is no level playing field, and I am not in the business of supplying Scotland’s one-sided Unionist media with ammunition.
When an independence supporter mounts a public attack upon another independence supporter, the only winners are the Unionist parties and their media friends. Unionist media outlets are all over such disagreements like a wet rash, and all of a sudden become surprisingly keen to offer a platform to the independence supporter making the criticisms. The Unionist media doesn’t do so because it wants to promote a more radical Scottish politics. It does so because it sees a chance to weaken the cause of independence.
If Mike Small chooses to go down that road, he can do so without any assistance from me. That is a ‘debate’ that he can have without me, and I will not be engaging with him further.
BARKING UP THE RIGHT TREE Barking Up the Right Tree has now been published and is an anthology of my articles for The National newspaper. You can submit an advance order for the book on the Vagabond Voices website at http://vagabondvoices.co.uk/?page_id=1993
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