Putting the con in confederal

Kezia Dugdale isn’t at all like Theresa May. Theresa offers nothing but tautologies, Kezia on the other hand has an actual plan. We need a new Act of Union, said Kezia the other week, a new relationship between Scotland, England, Wales, and Northern Ireland to secure the future of the UK because otherwise it risks breaking apart. It wasn’t much of a plan really, more a statement of fond aspirations. Well let’s be honest, it’s a rubbish plan, but a plan’s a plan even if it’s not a particularly well thought out one. After all, this is Labour in Scotland, and they’ve never knowingly done anything that was well thought out before, so it’s not like anyone was expecting them to start now. Why change a winning formula eh? Oh.

Labour in Scotland said that it wanted a new federal settlement, or rather a confederal one. No one was really sure what the difference was and since different Labour people were saying different things no one was any much the wiser, or particularly cared. There is a difference between federal and confederal, they’ve added the “con” this time because that’s what all Labour’s previous claims that they were going to introduce federalism were. But whatever the new federalism or confederalism means it’s going to be superdooperfantabulous-devo, and not the boring everyday devo that we’ve currently got which is consigning Labour in Scotland to the dustbin of history, otherwise known as the Unionist press. Ill thought out or not, Kezia’s new plan was trumpeted on the front pages as the new great saviour of all things red white and blueish.

Any plans from Labour in Scotland for major constitutional change are only going to make progress if they get the support of the UK party. When the plan was announced, Kezia was asked on Good Morning Scotland Eat Your Cereal whether she had spoken to the UK party leader about it and if he supported the idea. “Yes,” she replied. “Of course he does. Unequivocally. There has never been any suggestion of that otherwise,” said Kezia, confident and assured that Jezza was as desperate as she is to save the arse of her dying branch office.

Unfortunately, no one has asked Jezza. Or if they did he thought they were really talking about a new proposal to act for a union of Bolivian llama herders. He’s all in favour of that sort of thing. It’s just a pity that he cares a lot more about radical politics in Latin America than he does about Scotland.

“A new Act of Union?” said Jeremy looking surprised when the idea was put to him by a BBC reporter. Don’t we already have one of those? What do we need a new one for? I wouldn’t use those words. I wouldn’t call it a new Act of Union. Because when there’s a crisis that threatens to undo the Union, Labour wants to have a convention to discuss the powers of what Jeremy deigned to describe as the devolved assemblies. You can’t have devolution of migration, he added. That would mean borders between regions. No one has told him that Scotland has a parliament. No one has told him that Scotland is a country. No one has told him that Australian states, Canadian provinces, and the autonomous Portuguese provinces of Madeira and the Azores all manage to run their own migration policies.

Jezza wants to have a consultation before he’s consulted himself on the basics. His opposition to Kezia’s plan doesn’t have any logical basis apart from his own misconceptions. Jezza came to public prominence claiming he’d be different, swearing that he’d listen to the people, but as far as Scotland is concerned it’s the same old story. He doesn’t want to know. Whenever the notion of more power for Scotland is raised, Westminster Labour’s kneejerk response is NO!

That’s the big problem for Labour in Scotland. They can propose whatever they like. They can air any number of ideas that will be plastered all over the pages of the Scottish press as a sign that the Union is about to undergo radical change, and so there’s no need for any of this independence nonsense after all. They can do all that, but unless they can get the permission of the Westminster party, they’re as well wishing for a tap dancing unicorn. They’re not going to get it, and they have no means of making it happen because they’re a subordinate branch office. When Westminster Labour tells Labour in Scotland no ye cannae, there’s nothing they can do but eat their cereal.

Labour in Scotland’s plans have gone the same way as all their previous proposals for devomax, devo double plus good, for the nearest thing possible to federalism, for a modern form of home rule.

You might have thought that this major reversal to plans which were plastered all over BBC’s flagship jockocracy news show Reporting North Britain might have merited a a similar amount of publicity by the branch office of our subnational broadcaster. You might have thought that, but only if you were labouring under the misapprehension that BBC Scotland operates in the interests of the Scottish viewing public. They were more interested in attacking the Scottish government on the NHS, telling us how Chris Hoy’s travel plans were disrupted by the weather and he had to get a lift in a gritting lorry, how high winds and lorries are a bad combination, there was a murrdurr, train punctuality has improved but it’s still rubbish and that’s Humza Yousaf’s fault. Only after they got through all those stories, then and only then did they get round to informing us that Labour in Scotland’s grand plan to save the Union had just been screwed over by the party’s UK leader. You’d almost think that they didn’t want to dwell on it.

Yet again Labour in Scotland is mired in confusion and paralysis. No one knows what they stand for. No one knows where they’re going. And increasingly no one cares. As Labour sinks into confusion and irrelevance, it takes the Union with it. We see through the con in confederal.

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54 comments on “Putting the con in confederal

  1. Bugger (the Panda) says:

    In all my live, in Scotland, the UK and all the Countries I have travelled and tried to understand their politics, have I seen a bigger bunch of inept eejits who, without the SNP, would make me believe Scotland could’t run a menodge

    • Bugger, we do have a menage; a menage a trois idiots. Dugdale Rennie and Davidson.
      Paul, it is getting to the stage where even ridicule is too good for Kezia Dugdale.
      I assume that there is still a backroom committee of senior Labour Movers and Shakers in the Branch Office. Surely it’s time to tell Dugdale to stand down and ‘spend more time with her cats’, or whatever.
      Murray rather rashly admits that he has been ostracised by the Corbynistas, and his Shadow SoS job has been given to an Englishman.He is poison Down There.
      Dugdale, his fellow pro Smith, New Labour, Tony Blairite has as much influence on New Momentum Labour’s Union Policy as a teardrop in a forest fire.
      Scotland is a region of The North, as far as Corbyn the Islington Boy is concerned.
      The Scottish Branch has been a spectacular failure for over a decade now.
      Many of the centre left policies of the SNP Administration would not be out of place on even Corbyn’s Wish List.
      Davidson uses Dugdale as a contraceptive to try to fuck the SNP.
      Yet Dugdale, like Davidson and Rennie, are under no threat from their HQ’s Down There because they, and events in Scotland don’t really figure in their predominantly English Organisations. Nobody cares that they spout embarrassing nonsense, since it will never be reported South of Gretna. We’re hard pushed to get mid week Scottish football results on BBC these days.
      Scottish Labour, Conservative, and Lib Dem no longer register on the Richter Scale. England has ‘taken back control’. Cue another rousing chorus of ‘Jerusalem’.
      Surely the Brexit experience is proving to many previous No-ers that the South of Britain will always overrule anything coming out of Scotland. It’s the ‘democratic deficit’. What the English MPs want Scotland has it foisted upon it.
      Surely to god Labour followers in Scotland are waking up to the fact that the only way to save Scotland from the madness of Imperial England is Independence.
      Davidson is just a Tory mouthpiece; she believes in elitism, and state engineered poverty of the masses.
      A traffic bollard in a blue twin set and Cairngorm broach would have as much impact as this giggling joke of a person.
      They are beyond satire as they persist on clogging up the business of parliament like this.
      Brian Taylor and his wee Unionist pals in the Dead Tree Scrolls are now a weekly joke.
      Same old same old nice little earner for the hacks on my TV licence money.
      Two weeks into the New Year and Donalda’s definitely making her mark. Aye, richt.

      • FM says:

        Thanks again, Jack!

      • Marconatrix says:

        For ‘menage’ read ‘menagerie’ ???

        • Marco, they certainly use zoological analogies: ‘the rat race’. ‘the law of the jungle’, ‘dog eat dog’,
          We have as many pandas and elephants in Scotland as we have Unionist WM MPs, yet they are given ‘protected species’ status by news hounds, (get it?) and guttersnipes of our MSM.
          A menagerie indeed.
          I’ll get my coat.

          • Andimac says:

            Sure that’s not your coati mundi, Jack? Loved your rant – and every word true.

            • Dulce et decorum est, Andy.
              We have earned grumpy old gruntfuttok status, mon brave.
              Nobody can lay a glove on us now.

              • Del says:

                There are lots of us gruntfuttocks around – enough to qualify for a website of our own? oldgits.com springs to mind but sadly someone wants money for it, so that’s out then.
                There’s sufficient irony in the pronouncements of Dugdale and Corbyn to be able to drive in nails. Hands and feet preferably.
                I think I qualify for oldgitdom because it took me almost two days you read your post. To rephrase that, to get round to reading your post. No, to find that your post was there. Whatever.

          • Marconatrix says:

            TBH I was thinking more of the monkey-house … I was once on good terms with the Keeper of Primates down at Calderpark … his charges were certainly more interesting and innovative than the objects of the present discussion. Evolution or devolution, I wonder? 🙂

            • Marco, Dugdale is definitely tabula rasa.

              • Del says:

                Last time I remember tabula rasa was squeaky chalk slates when being told how to read at age 5. Seems to me to be Dugdale’s comparative reading age. How anyone with such an apparent low IQ can have paperwork from a yooniversity beggars belief.

      • Sandra Stewart says:


      • Bugger (the Panda) says:

        Ménage and menodge are different things but equally valid to this bunch of stooges.

        Maybe menodge is particular to Glasgow?

        • Andimac says:

          It’s certainly got an interesting etymology, Panda – all the way back to Latin manere. I think the Scots broadened the French meaning (a household) to a “menodge” for a group of people saving together. Not just particular to Glasgow but other parts of West Central belt – don’t know about out East, up North. I probably would know if I made more effort but, frankly, “See me, Ah couldnae run a menodge.”

        • I always assumed that ‘menodge’ was a corruption of ‘menage’, brought back by the Scottish soldiers returning from WWI, like ‘san ferry ann’,(it doesn’t matter) a corruption of ‘ca ne fait rien’?
          But what do I know?

  2. Bugger (the Panda) says:

    life for live

  3. […] Wee Ginger Dug Putting the con in confederal […]

  4. Dan Huil says:

    My disgust for these britnat eejits grows daily. Truly the bbc is a vile corporation. It has to be fought. Don’t pay the bbc tax.

  5. Jimbo says:

    “Yet again Labour in Scotland is mired in confusion and paralysis. No one knows what they stand for.”

    It’s worse than that – No-one in the Labour Party in Scotland knows what they stand for either.

    Kezia qualified her idea for a new Act of Union (known in Scotland as The Treaty of Union) by stating that only Westminster should decide what this new Act of Union was to be. Kezia thought it best that Scots should not be allowed a say in the matter. There’s real ‘I’m a true Scot, but’ patriotism for you.

  6. Clive Scott says:

    Good to see that the Mis-Reporting Scotland advan route for next week has been published. It would be good if the fact of the grass roots protest against the vile BBC could be highlighted by Nicola by her working it into the answer to every idiotic question from Ruth/Kezia/Willie at FMQ’s next week.

  7. Aonghus says:

    But BBC keep-Scotland-English doesn’t say ‘murrdurr’ – it says ‘mihdih’ so’s to avoid sounding too scotch.

  8. FM says:

    How many BBC tax payers have they lost? If even ten percent in Scotland were to stop paying, while it might annoy the BBC, it is a tiny loss. In media terms, and this is where it is to be won, we have a major problem. Anyone remember Radio Caroline? International waters and all of that?

    • FM says:

      Contd. Sorry! The point is that we are not getting a broadcasting licence so a way around it has to be pursued. Localised leafleting is one that could work?

  9. Alan says:

    Labour’s fame has spread to the New York Times. Even New Yrkers know where this is heading: Old Labour, New Labour, No Labour.

  10. Macart says:

    Simple logic.

    Over the decades, when Labour were enjoying their various stints as the first party of the UK as a whole and saturated Scottish politics from council level to House of Lords, they could not and they would not deliver Home Rule/Full Fiscal Autonomy/Devo Max. Their claim to fame? Two bites at the cherry to achieve parish council devolution. Why two bites? They kinda had more than a little hand in denying Scotland their parish cooncil at the first time of asking.

    Over five of the past seven years, Labour have been the second party of the UK as a whole and still saturated Scottish politics from council level to House of Lords, yet still they could not and they would not deliver Home Rule/Full Fiscal Autonomy/Devo Max. There was also the small matter of their staunch defence of the Westminster system of politics, hand in hand with the Conservatives and Libdems during the recent independence referendum (cough). Their actions and statements on the subject of the devolution settlement pre, during and post this event toward their own population spoke volumes and are a matter of public record.

    Today? Labour are still the second, though diminishing, party of the UK as a whole and so far as Scotland is concerned, saturate only Scottish councils and the House of Lords.

    Forty years of Labour in their prime, fully empowered and presented with opportunity after opportunity by the public.

    Does ANYONE seriously believe that the PLP (never mind Labour in Scotland), would or could deliver on any promise of a Federal/Confederal UK? If they could not and would not deliver in their prime, how could they, how would they, deliver it today?

    Their own historic record and political aims within the UK/Westminster system make this suggestion beyond laughable. The inherent nature of the Uk/Westminster system’s democratic deficit is that there are other political parties with vested constitutional interest in the continuance of the current system. Parties representing the constituencies of a far larger population. Bums on seats and votes in a chamber which gives lie to the term ‘equal partner’. The very nature of the House of Commons now takes the suggestion from the realms of laughable to merely disingenuous, deceitful and insulting.

    Simple logic.

    There is only one union worth a damn on these islands. The only one that stands a test of time and one that establishment politicians hijacked for their own use and conflated with their political aims.

    The social union.

    Do we need another parliament or government, full of people we didn’t elect, to tell us who our friends, our family, our allies are? Or can we manage our own hoose and work that out for ourselves?

    • Sublime, Sam.
      The Social Union is the glue holding Scotland together in these troubling times.
      Curran, Murphy, ‘something for nothing’ Lamont, the Alexanders, MacConnell, Reid, Bayonet Davidson, Foulkes, Darling, Brown, I could go on.
      Where are they now?
      Come to think of it, where are ‘the established churches’ on foodbanks, zero hours contracts, welfare cuts to the disabled, JAM families, and poorer pensioners?
      They to are part of a Unionist Establishment who have remained stubbornly silent despite the mounting evidence that Scotland continues to be marginalised, and treated like a troublesome colony. Sermon on the Mount comes to mind.
      They had their chance, 5 decades of dismantling Scotland, to be brutal, and batted not an eye when selling their fellow citizens down the river Thames, to feather their own murky little nests. (qv., Marconatrix’ ‘menagerie’ aside above.)
      While Lords Reid, Darling, MacConnell, Watson, Foulkes, and Baroness Liddell still ‘rule’ over us, and Blair and Brown work for the Man , and Murphy, Harris and Wee Douglas reinvent themselves as PR Consultants or whatever; Taylor, Brewer, Magnusson, Bird, Campbell, and Fraser, and the now virtually the universal Dead Tree Scrolls continue to behave as though Labour were still the dominant political force in Scotland, stretching even the logic of the Cuckoo’s Nest.
      Brexit is the tipping point.
      Surely to heavens the young people of Scotland, no matter their political leanings, realise that the Union is dead now. The only way is to ‘take control’ of our own destiny.
      I know that this particular silver haired old duffer has long since realised that Unionist politicians will do anything, say anything, threaten anything, to retain Scotland as a colony to exploit, and contain.
      ‘Weep not for me, but for your children, and your children’s children’.
      Now who said that?

      • Macart says:

        Heads up Jack!


        This’ll rattle a cage or two.

        • They’ll be loading the tranquilliser gun as I write, Sam.
          It must have occurred to the 27 that having an English speaking ‘new’ EU member on England’s border will be no bad thing.
          I’d imagine many companies in England, and Finance Houses will be looking Northwards too.
          The Brexshit is about to hit the fan.

      • I’m just jealous of your silver hair, Jack. Out canvassing shortly, then we will get a guide as to what effect Brexit is having on real people. Personally, I think the inevitable increase in food prices, which will adversely effect all of us, will be the first nail in the unionist’s coffin.

        • Those holidaying on the Continent this summer are in for a shock, too, Alex.
          I expect the pound will buy you one euro by then, or even less.
          I’ve earned every grey strand, AB!
          I recall many years ago working very late in an office in Salford, overlooking Of Trafford, and felt obliged to apologise to a wonderful West Indian cleaning lady as she fussed around my workstation.
          She surveyed my desk, checked out my grey hair inducing stress, and remarked:-
          ‘Life is hard but it’s sweet’, in a rich cheery voice.
          As you can see, I never forgot her wee philosophical take on life.
          ‘Independence is hard, but it’s sweet.’

          • Saor Alba says:

            That last bit is brilliant Jack!
            Thanks for sharing that wee quote from an obviously lovely human being.
            I can see my next T shirt with that quote on it.
            Independence is coming. It will be hard, but it will be sweet.

  11. punklin says:

    What no Trump micturition gags? – I know more toilet humour would be off-topic here (tho’ Kezia’s ideas are a bit shite, let’s face it) but they had me wetting myself in your previous post.

    So – can’t hold it in any longer, sorry:

    Q: Why does Donald Trump love Scottish golf courses?

    A: ‘ Cos he so enjoys getting pissed on.

    Ah’ll get ma plastic coat…

    • Dave Hansell says:

      That pesky corporate media eh!

      Just as well on this subject at least they are trying to sell us a line we all disagree with and which even a blind man on a galloping horse can see through. If they were, for example (and I’m sure it would not be too difficult to bring a recent one to mind – oh alright here’s a blatant clue: https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2017/01/hitler-diaries-mark-ii-hope-changed-mattress/ ) shrilling and pushing a specific pile of poo to join in a two minute hate session about an Emmanual Goldstein bogyman figure we all know is bad news anyway (without the pile of horseshit the media is trying sell us) some of us who like to think of ourselves as, ahem, ‘progressive’ might actually switch off our critical faculties and fall for it.

      Stranger things have happened – but not often.

  12. Brian Powell says:

    I wonder if Jermy Corbyn voted for any of the SNP amendments to the Scotland Bill that would have been the equivalent of creating a federal/devo-max settlement for Scotland?

  13. Macart says:

    Just read this!


    Its no bad. 🙂

    Oh, and probably this too.


    • Bugger (the Panda) says:

      Country, Nation, Geographical expression need to used consensually all rounf.

      State in UK of GB & NI, I consists of 2 Counties, Scotland and England plus on Principality, Wales, and one Province, N Ireland.

      It is a dog’s breakfast on a State with no codified Constitution and a total mess of a democracy with at its core, a Punch and Judy Parliamentary pseudo democracy.

      ASAP out we need to get

      • Macart says:

        Marquand didn’t mince his words did he?

        • Bugger (the Panda) says:

          No, jugular.

        • The Unionist Frog is yet to realise that it is immersed in a pot of gently heating water, Sam.
          They abhor sensible debate, and ‘facts’, don’t they?
          NS and the Scottish Government has the only plan, and firm position on future EU partnerships, and this is now being acknowledged throughout Europe.
          Where’s Mundell, BTW? Dare we hope for his resignation soon, to take up one of the limitless ‘visiting professor’ sinecures at one of our Universities?

    • Robert Graham says:

      surprisingly open and frank comments from both sources , times changing ? maybe .

      • Macart says:

        You never know. Just about collapsed in heap when I found out the FM will be writing a column for the Record of all titles.

        Certainly I think Brexit has focussed people’s attention on the true nature of constitutional issues. One or two even appear to have done some homework. Most serious commentators at home and more often abroad recognise the efforts and quality of the Scottish government and the First Minister. The btl and twatter haters, the pub constitutional experts like Tomkins can yah boo all they want from the sidelines. The serious statesmen on the European political stage are beginning to make their opinions known.

        • Spoke to my M.S.P this week Mac, and he was of the opinion that the Daily Record was becoming more conciliatory, at least in its editorials, to the S.N.P. Whether this will have any traction I don’t know, and another factor to be considered for the future is its proposed merger with the Daily Express, no friend of our ambitions.

          • Macart says:

            On the first count? Possible. On the second? No they’re no friends of Scotland … period.

            It’s a wait and see scenario Alex. Worth keeping an eye on though. The Record may be Labour through and through, but they’re also quite pro Europe. They’ll have a choice to make and here’s hoping that just for once its the right one.

  14. Richard says:

    Scotland is *already* in a confederation of states, the European Union. And voted to remain in it.

  15. Dan Huil says:

    More differences between Scotland and ruk to the fore in latest poll: http://scotgoespop.blogspot.co.uk/

  16. Macart says:

    Canon Kenyon Wright has passed away.


  17. John Edgar says:

    Where to now for Kezia? Big plan scotched (pardon the pun) by Metropolitan Corbyn. What next? She has hit the buffers now. One can only shake one’s head in disbelief.
    If her unionist leader says no and LfI are gaining ground, what next? A “party” straining at the seems. Gordo has been touting the same Kezia-stuff lately. Corbyn has put his gas at a peep.
    Parties implode first, 2015 then they become porous abd members drift away, 2016 and then they give out wee whimpers, Keziah’s plan and then they drop below the radar like the Lib Dems north of the Tweed.
    These yoon parties, without the brainwashing signals of the EBC at Pacific Quay, would hardly have their names mentioned as they have nothing to say. They are branches from dahn sath.
    When one looks at the shift in Scots voting patterns’ over the last 50 years, it points to de line in yoonery and a divide , chasm opening up between north and south of the Tweed.
    The only big grouping if Scots yoonery is in the HoL, now that is ironic. A fleapit of hereditary, old yoon party hacks pensioned off for (dud)loyal service to Scotland and a democratic distinction.

  18. bedelsten says:

    Can you hear that noise, the one that sounds like fingernails being dragged across a blackboard, or wet polystyrene rubbed on glass? That is the sound of the accounting unit of labour in Scotland vainly trying to avoid disappearing down a void of its own hubris just hoping no-one accidently pulls the plug in the cludgy of doom, flushing the whole lot down the pan.

    We ought to be surprised at the surprise expressed when the serial objectionist from Islington, recently demonstrating that the cranium was mostly being used to separate the lugs so as to support a hat, should continue objecting. But such is the habit of one with a stigmatised topographical view of the dis-united kingdom. One who, with an income approaching £150,000 p.a. (about six time the average) doesn’t think he is that wealthy. One who thinks the land north of Hadrian’s Wall is a ‘territory’ Ah! Well. Wither now Ms Dugdale? Jilted again.

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