Not a threat but a promise

Nicola Sturgeon has made a statement giving the Scottish government’s response to the Brexit process. It’s a statement which reflects, only in far more diplomatic language, the response of most of Scotland to the megamidden into which the Conservative party has dumped the entire UK. And that response to the UK government was along the lines of, “You can screw yourselves if you want, you bunch of serial selfish numpties, but you’re not going to screw Scotland too.”

Since the country was dragged into this eurogalactofuck by a Conservative party which was only interested in using Britain’s EU membership as a proxy war for its own internal disputes, Britain has been led by politicians with all the clarity of vision of an actor in a Specsavers advert, but without the same hilarious consequences. Brexit means Brexit, is Theresa May’s favourite mantra, but that’s as useful as saying balloon means balloon or wibble means wibble as far as it gives us any better understanding of what’s in store for us all.

What we do know is that while her words are meaningless, May has appointed the most right wing cabinet in recent history, and some of us are old enough to remember Margaret Thatcher. So whatever Brexit means Brexit actually means in the real world, it’s not going to be good for the unemployed, the poor, the low paid, the disabled, or our public services. It’s looking very much as though Brexit means more privatisation, austerity, militarisation, climate change denial, and xenophobia.

Nicola pointedly reminded a UK government which continually goes on about respecting the result of the 2014 referendum that the democratic will of the Scottish people must be respected. You can’t on the one hand insist that the Scottish people have spoken in 2014 and then ignore what the Scottish people said in 2016. The truth is that the UK that Scotland voted to remain a part of in 2014 is a UK that doesn’t exist and never existed outside the imagination of Better Together’s spin doctors.

Scotland was promised a UK where its voice would count. We were promised a UK where shipyard and tax office jobs would be protected. We were promised a UK which would deliver the strongest possible devolution. We were promised a UK that was a part of the EU. What we got was a UK which took action to restrict the voting rights of Scottish MPs, a UK where shipyard and tax office jobs were lost, a UK which delivered a weak devolution settlement that the Scotland Secretary openly boasted was a trap for the Scottish government, and a UK that’s leaving the European Union and taking Scotland with it even though Scotland voted to remain. I’ve said it before but it’s worth constant repetition – the Unionist parties do not get to demand that the result of the 2014 referendum is respected if they do not respect the promises that they made in order to win it.

Demanding that the democratic will of the Scottish people be respected was the first finger that Nicola Sturgeon gave to Westminster. She also gave them four more. Protecting Scottish economic interests, freedom of movement, and access to the European single market. Protecting Scottish social interests, the employment and human rights that we enjoy within the EU. Protecting Scottish solidarity, our ability to work cooperatively with our European friends to combat the serious problems facing the continent and the wider world like climate change and terrorism. And protecting Scotland’s ability to have an influence in European decision making.

It’s up to the Unionist parties to demonstrate now how they can protect all five areas of Scottish interest while Scotland remains in the UK. It was the Tories who got us into this mess, and if the Tories expect us to wallow in the Brexit mud with them, then they’re going to have to demonstrate concrete plans which will allow Scotland’s interests to be protected. This is their mess, but they’ve shown not the slightest inclination to start cleaning it up, instead they’ve used it as an opportunity to mount an internal right wing coup within the party. Bugger the rest of us. We’re just expected to do what we’re told.

If Labour expects Scotland to trot along obediently then it needs to stop its infighting and start fighting the Tories and demonstrating that a better Scotland is possible within the UK, but there’s as much chance of that happening as there is of Owen Smith saying that he’s a big fan of Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership abilities. And as for the Lib Dems, they need to explain why it is that they consider the 2014 referendum result to be set in stone, but they’re desperate for another EU referendum as soon as possible. But then we all know that if you look up Lib Dem in a dictionary of politics it’s defined as “lying hypocrite”.

Nicola Sturgeon and Scotland are not asking for anything new. We’re only asking for what the Conservatives and the other Unionist parties promised to deliver in 2014. We were promised economic stability, we were promised the certainty of EU membership, we were promised security and the broad supporting shoulders of the UK. Yet those shoulders are carrying us off into an uncertain and insecure future, outside of the EU, towards some right wing Tory tax haven without workers rights where state surveillance substitutes for personal security. That is not what Scotland voted for in 2014. If the Unionist parties can’t respect their own promises, then all bets are off as far as another independence referendum is concerned.

And next time, we’ll be ready, we’ll be willing, and we’ll be organised. We’re going to win the next independence referendum on a platform of respect for the democratic will of the people of Scotland, for a Scotland that shapes and decides its own future, a Scotland that is not dragged along unwillingly into a privatised nightmare of rightwing austerity in the wake of Conservative leadership ambitions but which forges a path as an equal partner with our friends and allies. That’s not a threat, that’s a promise.

Audio link to this blog article, courtesy of @lumi_1984

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22 comments on “Not a threat but a promise

  1. […] Wee Ginger Dug Not a threat but a promise […]

  2. John Edgar says:

    It is not just the Tories under May who are a canker to Scotland. Labour, either Jeremy as leader or not as leader. Corbyn does not even have Scotland ir Holyrood in his word inventory. He is a britnat (English version), a westminsterite arch-centrist, a londoniser and he is anti EU.
    the fissures in the branch or twig are beginning to show with Rowley edging towards an independent if not as yet independence stance.
    Kezia has gone stumm!
    The only hope for “slab” is to dissolve and its members and supporters realign within the independence parties north of the Tweed.
    LL, London Labour, is a death sentence for them. The first death throes were loss of power in Holyrood, then the BT catastrophe, and finally being reduced to one MP and coming behind the Ruthite tories at Holyrood.
    If they are still in denial about their true position, then oblivion awaits.
    Their “imperial” overlords dahn sath – party and unions – are about to plunge it into a split and irrelevancy.
    ENGXIT AND WELSHXIT and Labour’s voting for Trident have killed Keziaand co.

  3. Marian says:

    There’s a rising tide of Tory politicians (e.g. Murdo Fraser and Brian Monteith today) and their media hack chums telling Scotland to stop complaining and just accept Brexit and get on with making the best of it.

    This speaks volumes about the response that Scotland can expect to Nicola Sturgeon’s list of demands.

    • I’ve just read Monteith piece of pusillanimous sophistry in the Scotsman.
      Roll over and play dying fly, Scotland.
      This Blue Tory mouthpiece exhorts us to trust Fox Johnson and Davis to negotiate on our behalf on ‘wee matters’ like trade deals and the free movement of labour post EU.
      Given the decades of lies and treachery at the hands of Red Blue and Jaundiced WM Tories Montieth risibly expects us to trust Westminster; they will ‘allow’ disenfranchised Scotland control over agriculture, fisheries, and Higher Education? Idiot.
      The man’s arrogance in denying that Scotland is a nation in its own right, and his insults to the collective intelligence of those of us not in his Conservative and WATP/ The Queen’s Eleven Unionist bitter little sectarian Party, knows no bounds.

      He would send Ruth and Kezia North to Iceland and Farms in Fife in their wellies, in anticipation that the Three Mexiteers, Johnson, Fox and Davis, actually give a tinker’s curse about what the citizens of Scotland want.
      A precis of Monteith’s pathetic SE Oligarchy imperialism?
      Scotland is not a country; the UK is my country. The UK voted to leave, so fuck you Scotland.
      Keep it up, Mr Monteith. I’m sure that you’ll be well rewarded by your SE Establishment handlers when we reassert our Self Determination.

    • Alasdair Macdonald says:

      It is not just Mrs May who has been saying, ‘Brexit means Brexit’. BBC Scotland says it in every bulletin and has done so since the day after the referendum. It is the catechism of all the broadcast media. Channel Four News tonight had a feature which dealt with Northern ireland and Scotland, with Martin McGuinness and Nicola Sturgeon both making strong statements of their positions following the positive votes in both places. An ‘expert’ was then interviewed, who loftily said, “Nae chance.” This was presented as if it were an ex cathedra announcement.

      Essentially the Tories and their media mouthpieces (perhaps, masters?) are stalling for time so that they can get things the way they want. Like the rest of us, they know the situation is continuously evolving in unforeseen ways, but they want to convey the impression they are in control of events until they can shape it in a way that suits them. They are pretty split, but mask these things better than Labour, although their media allies seldom raise the split, divert attention to Labour, to shootings in Germany, to turmoil in the Democratic Party, to the cost of the Edinburgh Trams enquiry, etc…….

  4. Steve Asaneilean says:

    At least the Tories are honest in their position – they are dyed in the wool unionists.

    Corbyn on the other hand is a hypocrite – talks about and independent united Ireland yet seeks to deny that opportunity to Scotland.

    And given the almost righteous way the LibDems protected a court -proven liar I don’t know why you bother mentioning them at all. They are well past their sell by date and should simply be ignored and forgotten.

    I think Nicola is playing a blinder with her softly softly approach – we need to win over the doubters and can only do so by exhausting all the other realistic options. But given that these alternatives are gossamer thin in their substance that shouldn’t take too long and I would hope and anticipate that by this time next year we will have a date and Yes2 will be full steam ahead.

  5. Macart says:

    The FMs speech here:

    Great post Paul.

  6. gavin says:

    Cardboard Thatcher cutout, Teresa May says Fuxit means Fuxit—-because we are all fuxed noo!
    But she is the Leader of the Conservative and Separatist Party and she has the Scottish Tories and Scottish Labour joining her as Separatists as well.
    Don’t know how their preferred propaganda will work in Indyref2. How can Scots be separatists when the Britnats are separatists as well?

    • Dan Huil says:

      Good point. Muggie May has painted herself into a red, white and blue corner. It’s still the case that it’s britnats themselves who are doing the most damage to their so-called united kingdom. Their arrogance and ignorance towards Scotland are set to continue – or rather, intensify.

  7. Never underestimate your opponents. Theresa May could be accused of many things, but foolishness and incompetence are not among them. More’s the pity, perhaps

    • This woman appointed Boris Johnson as Foreign Secretary. I agree, she’s not a fool. Who is working her strings in the background?
      I am coming ’round to the notion that she is a mere stooge for the SE Oligarchy; she’s doing as she’s told by the Masters of the Universe. She is a cardboard cut out.
      What price her husband climbing the City ladder PDQ now that his missus is in the catbird seat?
      I will brook no argument from Unionists who deny that Scotland is a country in its own right. That just about includes all of them.
      Is it to be expected that when we vote for Self Determination all these ProudScotsBut will be on the last Helicopter out of Hanoi to the Holy London Empire?
      Or is that too much to ask?
      After all they won’t want to go down with the rest of us into the financial and diplomatic wilderness with which they take malicious delight in threatening us post Independence.

      Or is it ‘only politics’, rather like Liar Carmicheal’s Quaker backed lies?
      I am a Scot, so are the many hundreds of thousands who have moved here and made this marvellous country their home.
      I am not ‘British’ by nationality, or UK-ish.

      The Act of Union was a political construct foisted on us in the days of serfdom over 300 years ago.
      Scotland is a nation, whether Monteith, The Queens Eleven Fraser and BBC Scotland pretend otherwise.
      To deny one’s birthright must be a terrible thing.

    • Her record in Government suggests otherwise.

      Child abuse appointment scandal (x2),
      Immigration targets,
      “Go Home” vans,
      In bed with the Saudis,
      Deportation, deportation, deportation.

    • Alasdair Macdonald says:

      A sensible caution, which all of us who want independence should heed. Believing one’s own propaganda has been the downfall of almost every radical campaign. Whatever they are, the Tories know how to get power and use it for their own ends.
      Also, while the witty ad hominem attacks which Mr Kavanagh does with aplomb are just that – witty – do not let us delude ourselves that such repartee wins the argument. Mr Kavanagh, of course, recognises that and his articles make trenchant points.

      • douglas clark says:

        Paul does a great job of stirring it up. Indeed I enjoyed his polemic so much I bought his first two books. I am probably a proto-nationalist. I would vote for our independence even if it took generations for us to be truly free of Westminster.

        But you are right. We may be getting ahead of ourselves.

        I thought Nicola spelled out the reality of our position very well.

        This is not a gimme. We need to see what transpires before we jump to referendum 2.

        I really want to win that one.

  8. bedelsten says:

    Well, the abundant supply from above continues so, stuck inside – again, we watched the speech and Q&A, (link below) the structure and presentation of which does show up the lack of competence of Westminster politicians. Just for fun, we had a quick squint at what the press was saying and while most did a quick cut and paste job from segments of the speech and, at the end, added in some predictable and sad comments from other parties, in marked contrast, the state propaganda machine had, pretty well at the top, quotations from the blue corner – Prof. John Robertson probably has it all contextually analysed and scored. But, as we don’t pay them any money, I don’t suppose we are in a position to complain.

    Meanwhile, rumblings from darn sarth where the three amigos, the ones behaving badly in the shared Chevening bedsit, have differing views on how this will all end. Well, colour me amazed. My mind recoils at the thought of them stuck together on a threadbare sofa discussing hard, soft or squishy exits.

  9. Professor Jim Gallagher of down Oxford way is today’s US owned Herald Union’s Brit Establishment figure to spout forth about how wee and poor and content English Subsidy Junkies we all are Up Here.
    Odds on that Borin’us Mone will flash her obvious charms across the pages of this Better Together Mouthpiece on Friday morn.
    Easiest money on the planet being a ‘cut and paster’ hack for the Unionist Dead Tree Scrolls Up Here.
    Job requirement? The ability to append , ‘will say’, to the latest batch of lies from the zombie Better Together team
    Essential tools? A copy of the Unionist Lexicon of Menace.
    ‘Threatens’, ‘warns’, ‘subsidy junkies’, ‘Jockalypse’, ‘too wee ‘, ‘too poor’, and so on.

  10. John Edgar says:

    Brexit means Brexit. There is another variable in the equation. The EU itself.
    Junker has said no sweeties for the UK brexiters, ie Engxiters.
    If May means what she says, then it is the independence route for Scots to take. We are not waiting to be given this, we take it.
    Sturgeon has laid out basic criteria, lastly being able for Scotland to be at the top table in the EU in line with the other 27 members.
    May’s Engxit means that cannot be fulfilled.
    Ergo, we leave the UK or England-Wales leaves the UKunion of 1707.
    Thecanker in Scotland is, as always, the Westminster set up, not the EU.
    As the westminsterites have scunnered the EU, we are in a favoured position to move seamlessly into the place London has vacated.

  11. sentientseas says:

    “more privatisation, austerity, militarisation, climate change denial, and xenophobia.” I certainly hope this is not the outcome. In particular denying the evolving climatic disruption and its myriad of effects would be a most unwise move.

  12. Eli says:

    Just saw Georgous George Galloway on the Matthew Wright show pontificating about there is no need for a 2nd Scottish Referundum and even if there is one the majority would still vote no as Scots are canny about money. There is nothing more patronising than some ex pat Scots.This from a man who talks about freedom for Palestine but who also said good things about Saddam Hussein.What an arrogant hypocrite who clearly doesnt understand the mood or politics in Scotland these days

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