Off the Brexit cliff

The Tories and their little helpers in the Labour party in Scotland have shown themselves in their true colours. The Tories with their arrogant contempt for democracy and refusal to accept votes which don’t go their way, and a Labour which is so blinded by its tribal hatred of the SNP that it’s acting as an enabler for the very sort of nationalism that it claims to oppose. Theresa May has pushed us all off the Brexit cliff, and Scottish Tory after Scottish Tory has lined up to push Scotland off along with the rest of the country and together with Labour they’re taking a knife to our parachute. Make no mistake, this is a direct assault on Scottish democracy. This is an attempt by Westminster’s little helpers to ensure that Scotland cannot have a say, cannot have a voice, cannot have a choice in its future. And it must be resisted by every legal means possible.

The Tory government, through the office of its single solitary beard munching Scottish MP, has said that’s it’s not going to enter negotiations with the Scottish government before the end of the Brexit process. Before, in other words, the Westminster government has negotiated away Scotland’s resources and assets, before it’s ensured that European citizens resident in Scotland will be deprived of a say in the future of the country that they’ve come to call home.

Labour is fine with this. Labour says it opposes nationalism but it doesn’t know what nationalism is, because if it did then it wouldn’t side with the Tories’ vicious British nationalism. Labour doesn’t oppose nationalism. Their solidarity depends on you being British. They shamefully voted against allowing EU citizens to have a say in Scotland’s future – apparently they hate nationalism but think that it can only be opposed by people with British passports. But of course it’s not that they hate nationalism. They hate the SNP, and they hate the SNP more than they hate the destruction that the Tories are wreaking on the UK and refuse to countenance a Scotland that might escape from it. You need multiverse theory to account for the contempt which Labour provokes in anyone who understands what democracy and socialism are really about, because that contempt is larger than the universe that we’re currently in.

The Unionists on social media howl in derision and disdain, but like Labour they can’t see past their hatred for the SNP to realise that what the Tories are doing is mounting a coup against the entire concept of democracy in Scotland. The Scottish Parliament has spoken, and that’s bigger than the SNP. Refusing to recognise a vote in the Scottish Parliament disrespects Scotland, disrespects all of Scotland’s voters irrespective of their views on the constitution, and it disrespects the long struggle to achieve a Scottish Parliament in the first place. Because the entire point of that struggle for a Scottish Parliament during the bitter and bleak years of Thatcher’s rule was so that Scotland would have a voice when it was faced with a government in Westminster that it didn’t vote for.

“The SNP doesn’t respresent Scotland!” the Unionists cry. And that would be true. But what happened yesterday was that the Scottish Parliament voted, by a majority of ten votes, for there to be a second referendum. The Scottish Parliament does speak for Scotland. It’s the only voice Scotland has. That’s how democracy works. The Unionists want to substitute the legitimacy of the Scottish Parliament for opinion polls. But you could bet your house that if there was a series of opinion polls showing a majority for independence those Unionists would be the very last people to say that there was no need for a vote and Scotland should become independent forthwith.

The contempt for Scotland is summed up by the Tory MSP Annie Wells, who said on STV that she refused to recognise the vote taken in Holyrood on Tuesday. If Glasgow list MSP Annie Wells doesn’t accept the legitimacy of a majority vote in Holyrood, the Parliament in which she sits, then if she had the slightest sense of decency she would resign. But of course she has no sense of decency. She’s a Tory, she has the opposite of a sense of decency. She’ll continue to take her salary that’s paid for by the taxes of Scottish taxpayers, she’ll continue to sit in the Parliament and enjoy a position that allows her a public profile, and she’ll continue to deny the legitimacy of the place that gives her the privileges that she continues to benefit from. Annie Wells is the epitome of hypocrisy in a party that stands for hypocrisy. As a list MSP, her constituency is the whole of Glasgow, and the whole of Glasgow should hold her to account.

We’re now living in exactly the kind of country that the Unionists warned us against back in the referendum campaign in 2014. Parochial, inward-looking, driven by nostalgia and a romantic vision of an airbrushed past, nursing grievances against historic enemies, with an unrealistic sense of its own importance and an unshakable sense of its own self-importance. Today the headline in a pro-Brexit newspaper was FREEDOM!, because it’s OK to channel Braveheart when you’re British.

Britain has embarked upon its project of epic self-harm. European leaders are lining up to warn the UK that Brexit is going to be painful for Britain. The Brexiteers with the delusions of glowing opportunities and countries queueing up to do trade deals are about to come up against the hard reality of an EU that has a vested interest in ensuring that Brexit does not end well for Britain. It’s not a question of malice. It’s simply that if a nation is better off by leaving the EU then there’s no point to the EU, so the EU has an existential reason to make sure that Britain isn’t better off. Theresa has invoked Article 50, and now the EU will begin to turn the screw.

Theresa May wants us all to unite behind her and her vision for Brexit. That’s not going to happen. The only way that we’ll get behind Theresa and her Tories is so we can push them off the Brexit cliff while we remain behind. We will resist them with every fibre, with every thought and deed. Theresa May might think that she can stop Scotland from having a voice, but she’s going to be sadly disappointed. If she continues to obstruct us, there are other paths to a vote. And Scottish democracy will win. Theresa’s pushing us off the cliff, but it’s her precious Union that’s going to smash on the Brexit rocks below.

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53 comments on “Off the Brexit cliff

  1. […] Source: Off the Brexit cliff […]

  2. TheStrach says:

    Well said. I’ve been feeling a bit down today with the whole Brexit process kicking off.

    An antidote must be to get involved and do as much as I can to help Scotland win independence.

    We have a number of routes to that goal and unlike last time I’m confident our friends in Europe will do all they can to help.

  3. Douglas says:

    It beggars belief that the Tories try to deny us a choice.

    Brexit is indeed jumping off the cliff.

    In 18 months time we will know how high that cliff is.

    Do they really expect us to agree to jump with them just to know for sure how hard the rocks below are?

    Do they think we are so lacking in imagination that we need to feel the impact before we decide that it was a dumb idea?

    I think we will know much sooner. They want us to share in the wreck so that we become too scared to leave.

    Nae chance.

    We’re leaving this stupidity…

    P.S. English refugees who want to build a better Scotland also very welcome

    • Les Bremner says:

      We will learn very little about how high the Brexit cliff is after 18 months. As individuals we may never actually know. There are so many laws which need to be changed that we will never know what all of the new ones do.

      Activities which are legal today will become illegal. We will find out when we are accused of transgressing them. If we think that Stalin was repressive, dictatorship plus hidden laws from Westminster will put us in the same situation. We have seen the dictatorship, now come the laws.

    • steelewires says:

      I don;t think it beggars belief. It’s disgusting, but it’s what English Imperialists and their Scottish sycophants have done for 300+ years. I’m not surprised.

    • steelewires says:

      Yes! English and Welsh who don’t want Empire 2, come and join Scots in a country which is planning for the present and the future. Leave a country that’s planning for the past and the social conditions of the 19th century and earlier.

  4. donald6 says:

    Labour has always said that they prefer the Tories to the SNP and Independence. Most of them are too thick to know that they are British Nationalists.

  5. Saor Alba says:

    What complete and utter arrogance and hypocrisy from Annie Wells, who was not voted in by the electorate, but scraped in on the list vote. She will accept the privilege but not the responsibility. Contemptable!

  6. Brian Powell says:

    Wells and others tried the argument that the SG didn’t accept Holyrood votes that didn’t suit them so she wouldn’t accept the vote yesterday.
    Of course the vote yesterday was Yes or No to going for a Referendum on Independence. The votes she talked about were the SG proposals or three other parties with different policies, not a single opposing proposal.
    Her attempt at comparison was fatuous.

  7. AAD says:

    I’ve just emailed Annie Wells to ask her, very respectfully, to resign from the Scottish Parliament because she does not recognise a legitimate vote of that Parliament. I would ask others to do the same, especially if you live in Glasgow. She has no right to sit in Parliament if she does not respect its decisions. Please do it with respect despite her lack of respect for the electorate of Glasgow.

    It might just have been by computer, but I had to click on mountains and street numbers over a dozens times before I could send my email, so be prepared.

  8. At PMQ today; a forward line of Patel, Hammond, Davis, Johnson, Rudd, and Fox, and wee Fluffy haudin’ the jaikits. And May attempting to slap down Angus Robertson when he speaks the truth.
    I’m living through a nightmare. Next you’ll be telling me that Trump is POTUS.

    The Ultimate sanction if the Yoons refuse to negotiate on a reasonable timetable for Indyref 2 which includes the voting rights of EU citizens is to dissolve Holyrood October 2018, hold a GE and include Independence in the manifesto.
    A straight vote. We’ll have had another 18 months of Red Blue Yellow Tory austerity cuts, and Brexit will be wreaking havoc on the economy, jobs, foreign travel, workers’ rights and so on.
    Great and abrupt summary of the situation, Paul especially the Red Tory’s Brit Nationalist stance.
    Not one for mincing words, are you ,Paul? Thank the Lord for that.

  9. […] Wee Ginger Dug Off the Brexit cliff […]

  10. Walter Hamilton says:

    Aline from flight of the phoenix comes to mind “You act as if stupidity were a virtue” thankfully Scotland like NI has an opt out

  11. John Edgar says:

    Great article, especially section on Annie Wells, a ToryMSM, who does not recognize the legitimacy of Holyrood
    Read Patrick Cockburn in the Independent on-line. He writes about English nationalism. It is a withering attack on May and Co. He sat hat is obvious.
    A must read.

  12. Jan Cowan says:

    I have great faith in Nicola, the SNP team and the Greens. We have high intelligence ( brains!! ) working hard to lead us to independence. We’ll win the wonderful prize……..our own country.

    Thank you, Paul, for another excellent piece.

  13. Macart says:

    What we saw in parliament yesterday wasn’t a defence of the union, that you could get behind. It’s an argument. A point of view. A principled stand.

    That’s not what we witnessed.

    What we witnessed was a black shame on Scottish politics as Scottish politicians queued up to attempt to undermine the legitimacy of the Scottish parliament, our government and our democracy. The unionist parties told the people of Scotland through their words and actions ‘your opinion doesn’t matter’. You shouldn’t have a say and we don’t recognise your rights.

    The hatred of the ConLabLib politicians for the SNP is a matter of record at this point. Their disdain for the electorate however and our basic right to choose was appalling to see on display. When an MSP has the neck to stand there and tell the world they don’t respect the decision of parliament, they have no place in that parliament. They have no right to claim representation of anyone.

    There is a big difference between arguing your corner and disrespecting the politics, the democracy and the population that pays your wages.

    • John Edgar says:

      What is worrying is that the BBC and other correspondents do mot seem to pick up such insults emanating from the Tory MSP do not acknowledge Su h points.
      It is because many in an are anti Holyrood, they are westminsterites deep down. They are compromised, not the fourth estate, the old term for the press.
      The top S are becoming a blob agin the Scottish Parliament. They fail to recognize the obvious that the anglo-Yoon parties are in decline north of the Tweed and the LibDem-Lab relics are dwindling even faster north and south of the Tweed. The old set-up of the two party UK with the LibDem hang-on we were brainwashed with in Modern Studies textbooks as the immutable norm, is facing out. Hence one upon mp from the three parties.
      Seismic shifts are hard to detect by the yoonists, as they still live and breath in the Westminster bubble.

    • Well said, Sam.
      The Yoons announced to the world that Holyrood was powerless to stop an English dominated Westminster Ultra Right Cabal doing what it liked with us. There was a cynical attempt to ridicule our Parliamentary democracy yesterday and today.
      May’s screeching hysterical frightened response to Angus Robertson during PMQ today clearly illustrated that she is operating way above her pay grade.
      They’re shit scared and it shows. Davis almost chewed his way through both legs of his glasses on QT the other night. Somebody give that man a dummy teat.
      He is clearly a man under intense pressure who hasn’t a clue what he’s about.
      WE wait until we can see the whites of their eyes.
      All the Scotland Deniers lined up to challenge the authority of our elected Parliament, hiding behind our Big Bad Neighbour to the South, as they disgracefully filibustered for the thick end of three days, rather than debate the motion.
      They are now a joined up odious bunch of Fifth Colonists , a collective Judas Goat, trained to lead the Scottish people like sheep where we refuse to go, the abattoir.
      They insult our democracy.
      We keep our powder dry over Easter. Brexit will have sudden impact, and May and the Brexiteers will be enmeshed in arm wrestling in Brussels from the get go.
      In the meantime, the relentless heartless brutal Red Blue and Yellow Tory Cuts will expose them for what they are. The enemies of the people. Neil Findlay voted to reward the rich and steal from the poor yesterday.
      There is no coming back from such treachery.
      Shame on you all.

      • btw a play on ‘Fifth Columnists’ as ‘fifth Colonists’ is deliberate.
        We have 59 MSPs who would sell Scotland to England for money.
        I would invite none of them to my house to break bread. They are unholy evil Scotland Deniers.
        There is a rage creeping through our land.

      • maxi says:

        Well said jack.

    • Saor Alba. says:

      The hypocrisy and deceit of the Unionist parties knows no bounds and has become Scotland’s shame. Their motives are totally self-centred. Not once did they take part in the debate (reasoned argument is foreign to them), but they simply hurled insults and hatred at those who do not share their views. Just like their counterpart Tories in London. Wee Ruthie even tried to smooth talk Patrick Harvie at one point in order to coax him on-side. He is far too honest and clever for her nonsense.

      Hatred has only ONE source and it is absolutely EVIL. It is this hatred which is DIVISIVE and has been at work in Scotland for a long, long time. It is interesting to look at the scowls on the faces of the members of the 3 Tory parties when they engage in their so-called arguments. Not for them truth or honesty.

    • Patience is a Virtue says:

      Patrick Harvie’s/Greens amendment to the Bill to allow EU nationals a vote = ‘Passed’,

      for the motion :- Yes = 69 [i.e. Greens and SNP], No = 59 i.e. all Labour MSPs/ Liberals and Conservatives voted against.

      At least from this point on, if you are an EU national resident here, you know just how well your interests are represented by your respective MSP now ! – and welcome aboard if your MSP has just abandoned you!

      Come the Local elections in May and beyond, this shameful triumverate should be reminded of this pitiful episode in history on every occasion.

      High praise is due to the Green’s on this.

      • Patience is a Virtue says:

        ‘You don’t get a Referendum for free. You have to earn it. So if the Greens and the SNP – and the SSP or any of the other Parties who declared an interest in Independence – get over the line and can make a coalition, make a majority, get the votes in Parliament, then they’ll vote through a Referendum, and that’s what Democracy is all about..it’s perfectly simple’ -Ruth Davidson 2011

        Thanks to WoS (Proud Cybernat) and to Ruth for that.

      • Saor Alba says:

        High praise indeed.

  14. stewartb says:

    So the de facto English parliament and a de facto PM for England decides not only to take my EU citizenship away but also to impose leaving the EU on all nations of this ‘precious’ union, regardless of the majority views of the different nations’ electorates.

    And just seen a clip on C4 News where May compares Scotland’s vote to remain with the remain vote in her own constituency. So Scotland does not even merit the status of a ‘nation’ in the UK when it suits her, far less its status as one of two Kingdoms – an equal partner – in her precious union.

    The hypocrisy just gets more astonishing.

    And how many more times will I hear EU leave voters in England say on TV and radio that their decision to vote leave was based primarily on regaining ‘sovereignty’? Do they not even know – have they never even considered – what it means to live together in the union that is the UK? Of course not!

    How many insults will the people of Scotland accept?

    • Still Positive says:

      stewartb: Angus Robertson challenged her on that comparison, saying Scotland is a country. She refused to say we are a country merely saying,” Scotland is a constituent part of the UK.”

      Beyond raging at that language (as a retired English teacher).

  15. Is it just me, or has the notion of a reunified Ireland slipped seamlessly into MSM discourse over the past few days, with the acceptance of NI into EU membership being seen as automatic should that be the case ?

    Now don’t get me wrong, I’m as much in favour of a reunified Ireland as I am an independent Republic of Scotland, but it’s not that long that even suggesting that NI might rejoin Eire would have been met with horror and disbelief. Yet only a few hours ago May was delicately saying she wasn’t “neutral” about reunification & that the tory manifesto had a “preference” for NI staying in the UK. Hardly the hysterical shriekings that met our democratic vote in the Scottish Government resulting in an agreement to request an Independence referendum in 18 months time.

    Frantz Fanon advocated, I believe, that the colonised “lumpenproletariat” were justified in using violence against their colonisers, as it was good for their mental health & because they truly believed change was possible. Also because no coloniser took over another nation without violence, Fanon merely saw it as just desserts, I imagine – payback time.

    As I listen to May cooing to NI and screeching at Scotland, I think Fanon had a point 🤔

  16. steelewires says:

    I think that British Nationalism is really English Nationalism. English people speak of England when they mean Britain. To them England is Britain and Britain is England. The leaders of the Unionist parties in Scotland are actually English Nationalists. They want our 59 Scottish MPs to be outvoted by English MPs. They want English MPs to make our decisions for us. They want us to be powerless in the UK parliament. If that isn’t English Nationalism, what is?

  17. Shane Fraser says:

    Breaks My Scottish Heart .. fkd over at every turn, again, again and again, that Scottish Labour, Scottish Conservites, Scottish Libdems bring nothing to the table for the Scottish people other then A Fucking Westminster Right Winged Unelected Tory Government to Mind Fuck A Nation Again, again and again for generations to come. But My Scottish Will Is Now Even Stronger, I’m Off My Fkg Knees, Now watch me stand and not be afraid .. I am soverign, as my country still stands as a nation of people who believe in self detemination, i will not cowar from the fear mongers, i see right through their pish and manipulation from the well established FAKE MSM .. MY Message is this .. INDEPENDENCE IS COMING, NOT EVEN SATAN HIMSELF is going to stop it !

  18. punklin says:

    You say Paul that “there are other paths” to an indyref

    But which one is our best bet, d’you think?

  19. Liam says:

    “single solitary beard munching Scottish MP”? For God’s sake man, you’ve just lowered yourself into the Garage / Mail cess-pit. Have some respect for all ethnicities, sexualities, races and religions, for that is the kind of progressive, all-enbracing independent Scotland we wish, not one that resorts to name-calling LGBT people. Rise above!

    • weegingerdug says:

      A) I’m gay and have been out and proud and campaigning for LGBTQ rights for decades.
      and
      B) That’s a reference to Mundell’s well known propensity for picking things out of his own beard and snacking on them.

      • Graham Fae Fawkirk says:

        I never took it as anything else, and am now laughing at the other connotations that could be construed from that phrase, especially in the circumstances. 🙂

    • Saor Alba says:

      I think you have jumped the gun here Liam and are way out with this comment. I do not see the relevance at all.
      You obviously do NOT know Paul at all and have no cognisance of Mundell’s dirty habits.

  20. Jonnny come lately says:

    @Punklin
    The Snp can’t get a 2/3 majority to dissolve Holyrood. If they could then they could stand for election on one mandate which is a vote in the scottish parliament for independence.

    They could however collapse parliament and stand for election on a mandate of an independence vote in parliament. If the vote is for independence, then UDI is declared by the SG. It’s the way most countries have achieved independence this century. A referendum is only the SNP’s preferred route.

    Or…. Call a national assembly. This means that all our mp’s are recalled to Holrood from The European parliament and Westminster. A vote is taken on independence at Holyrood, and again if it is for yes then UDI is declared. A national assembly would be the best route in my opinion as a yes vote would be more than 2-1 for.

  21. Gavin C Barrie says:

    I’m for the national assembly route. A referendum provides opportunities for UK forces to corrupt the outcome. The only weapon the UK would have against a national assembly would be attempts at direct bribery. I simply do not trust the UK establishment. And I regard all three Scotland branch unionist parties with scorn.

    Astonished at Scotlab opposing the motion?

    Why do we have the d’Hondt voting system such that losers, by substantial votes, like Tomkins, Frazer, can become MSPs, Annie Wells with just 2,300 votes? Which political party imposed that system?

    Remember the re-alignment of the maritime border at Berwick-on-Tweed? Again, which political party?

    Remember the 40% ruling way back in 99(?), and the dead counted as No votes, proposed by a Scots MP of which political party?

    Note the impotent performances of the Presiding Officer, which party?

    “Scots are not genetically(?) suited to govern”. Who said that? Why Ms Lamont of Labour, now sitting at Holyrood as a failed nonentity

    Would the previous P O, Patricia Marwick(?) have ever allowed Davidson to behave as she did? Sneering at Joan McAlpine’s Scots accent, bawling “sit down” to Nicola Sturgeon.

    I somehow doubt that the coming Indy campaign is going to be a happy clappy affair.The disgraceful behaviour of Unionists at George Sq following Indyref1, may well be a taster.

  22. Waiting for Scotland says:

    They are exasperating, I know. But they are now irrelevant. We have now entered the realm of realpolitik. Nationhood is now inevitable. What are we going to do on day one.

    There is an obvious solution that is staring us all in the face.

    In 2014, The EU was opposed to independence because it would have affected the lives and stability of several hundred thousand EU citizens in Scotland and other European countries, placing them all in a legal limbo. That is why the Conservatives ruthlessly used the EU’s sensitivity to this issue to line up a veritable galaxy of political heavy weights to dissuade us from voting for independence.

    The EU residents in Scotland by and large voted no to independence in 2014. I respect their reasons for doing so, but I still feel their choice was unfair to us. The Scots choose the EU by remaining in the UK. We did not have to extend the vote to EU citizens in 2014 but we did. That at least demonstrated our honorable intentions towards the people of Europe.

    In 2015, the Scots once more demonstrated their fidelity to the European Project by electing a near majority of MSP’s on a promise to seek a second independence referendum if we were removed from the EU without our consent. We backed this up in 2016 by voting by a wide margin to remain in the EU. A franchise that was not extended to EU citizens by the same Conservative UK government which had co-opted their connivance in defeating the first independence referendum.

    Now the Scottish Parliament has moved a majority vote to have a second referendum on independence on the question of leaving the EU.

    As a people, the Scots have demonstrated at these votes and polls their preference for close ties with the EU. On all four of these occasions our demonstrated ambition has been, and continues to be, actively thwarted by a cabal of Rand inspired eccentrics currently running the show in the UK. They are using dog whistle politicians to do their fighting in Scotland for them and combining this with an orchestrated media blitz primarily aimed at frightening pensioners.

    In light of these past events, why wouldn’t the EU facilitate Scottish Independence and work out a good deal with Scotland? It would certainly stabilize the concerns of their citizens in Scotland right now.

    A Norwegian transition model as a holding pen while we work out the details among ourselves on how we as an Independent Nation would negotiate our relationships with the world, would I think, be a necessary first step as we tread the path of independence.

    Being an associate member of the EU would put us in a free trade zone with 27 other nations, with access through these trading relationships to the rest of the world. It would protect us in the short term from the barracudas who would exploit our new found nation hood (Trump), given half the chance. We need only look south of the border to see how that works out.

    An new independent European nation removing from their grips a vast area of potential resources would weaken the UK as a new rival to the EU, while at the same time reinforcing and strengthening the EU itself. A fortunate consequence for a wounded EU to get some payback against an obvious bunch of spivs, who don’t understand terms like bargaining in good faith, and who are actively working to break up the European Union.

    I think this is a plot straight out of Yes Minister. Too bad for the UK there isn’t a Sir Humphrey around to point out the courageous decisions being made by the May Cabinet. Of course that’s because they’ve all been purged for not demonstrating the proper brexit zeal.

  23. Macart says:

    Apologies for not getting back to folks for the past day or so. Been in and out of bed with a bad case of the lurgy.

    Many thanks for the replies to my comment.

    Sam

  24. emilytom67 says:

    not once ever have I heard one positive thing about Scotland or it,s people from the unionists inc Slab,no initiatives no proposals as to how we can/should improve peoples lives,doom/gloom all the way,how can folk still fall for this.

  25. James Sinclair says:

    Time now to concentrate all our energies in removing the political disease we have here in Scotland, namely the servile Labour party and all their digusting retinue. May 14th is the next step on the road to independence.

  26. Andy Anderson says:

    It is certainly very interesting times we live in. I sometimes swing between optimistic to wary to scared at some of the vents that are hitting us.
    To me we have only one issue to overcome. This being to get 2014 No voters to vote Yes the next time. Obvious but not easy.
    It is not an easy task due to the media but mainly because of each individuals bias built up over the years. It can take over a year to swing a person over using an open friendly approach. We all need to start now. Much more important that tying into blogs, enjoyable as this is.
    The second path to educating people is to get yourself in front of local groups, be they the local flower society, dance group, whatever and gently start to educate. We do not have much time.
    Paul another great article. Thank you all for your comments, always enjoyable and educating.

  27. JGedd says:

    The reason why the Unionist parties are so lacking in respect for Scotland and its democracy is that they are truly representing those who vote for them. Surely I am not the only one who has encountered that antipathy to Scotland in their core vote demographic?

    Identity is a complex matter and sometimes more fluid than we give credit for. It’s why some people can describe themelves as proud Scots and yet can become very angry when it is suggested that Scotland could be a separate country. Before the first referendum they could live comfortably within what they saw as “Scottishness” without ever having to define it. During the independence campaign many were asked to confront the idea of a separate country and that was when another identity made its way forcefully to the surface and aligned itself with Unionist politicians.

    For Unionist politicians, both personally and professionally, their identity is with the establishment. They sprang from a class whose identity is horizontal rather than vertical. To put it crudely, they are more likely to identify with the interests of the comfortable in the stockbroker belt in the Home counties than those struggling in rundown towns in the Central Belt of Scotland. Ruth Davidson showed it starkly in her mockery of Scottish accents. Scant respect for Scottishness there.

    Labour politicians always pretended to be on the side of the have-nots but it became more and more obvious that as their own social status advanced, they had little connection with those left behind. Many of their former voters left as they realised that Labour politicians had morphed into a virtual Tory party. Those remaining, mainly are those who were not affronted by Labour’s lack of principle. It appears that these voters, like Scottish Labour, are more interested in maintaining their social position than helping to advance Scotland. In fact, they appear to regard a separate Scotland as threatening to them and see a government in WM, no matter its colour, as always likely to serve their own narrow interests best.

    There has often been a latent snobbery present in those we are pleased to call “aspirational” a distaste for those who are left behind and in colonial terms this is often expressed as disdain for those who are still “native”. We saw it at its most crude and unlovely in the recent so-called debate in the Scottish parliament. Labour and Tory apparently saw no danger to them electorally in expressing their disparagement of Scotland. I’m afraid that class identity in some people is stronger than national identity – even the seeming proud British nationalism of these individuals is just a mask for protecting their class interests.

  28. Jim Morris says:

    Let’s get a written constitution down on paper, or screen as the case may be, and invite everyone to spell out exactly what we do and dont want in our country’s future.

  29. Graham Fae Fawkirk says:

    The acronym ‘UDI’ comes to mind more and more.

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