Looking at the bigger picture

I’m not a fan of Jeremy Corbyn as far as Scotland is concerned. On topics Caledonian, he channels the knuckle-dragging careerist element of Labour in Scotland and since Scotland’s movement for self-determination isn’t sufficiently glamorous or unambiguously anti-colonialist, it’s the only movement for self-determination he won’t support. If only Scotland had more fields of quinoa hand harvested by sun beaten Quechua speaking peasants who were directly descended from the last Inca emperor then we might get more of a favourable hearing from Jezza. People living in Glasgow sink estates who are descended from dispossessed Gaelic speaking crofters who were thrown off their lands in order to make way for sheep and deer for the rich just don’t cut it for him. The Labour leader’s support for national self-determination movements is directly proportional to how far away they are from Islington. It makes it easier to romanticise them.

This lack of support is not unconnected with the view in Labour that the party needs Scotland in order to secure power in Westminster. Which is yet another instance of Labour’s propensity for putting the party before the people. Labour needs Scotland, but Scotland doesn’t need Labour.

However when it comes to exploring more intelligent and thoughtful responses to terrorist atrocities, Jeremy Corbyn speaks a lot of sense. Let’s be clear – the responsibility for the cruel murders carried out recently in Manchester falls squarely with the perpetrators. They are to blame, they are culpable. They and they alone are criminally responsible. And if there is a God he or she will judge them harshly for it. There is no eternal paradise waiting for the Manchester suicide bomber, only the damnation of the living. A god who is happy to see children murdered isn’t a god, it’s a demon. If we call on Muslim communities to reflect upon the perversion of their religion which a minority supports and which that minority claims justifies violence, we must likewise reflect upon the actions of Western societies. That’s precisely what Jeremy Corbyn was saying.

Corbyn makes a valid and important point. The so-called ‘war on terror’ is clearly not working, and it’s not working because we focus on the means but never the motives. The government and much of the media talk about finds of terrorist material, about arrests of terrorist suspects, about the processes by which terrorists carry out their evil deeds. But they’re less inclined to address what causes these things to happen in the first place. The point that Jeremy Corbyn was making was not to exculpate or excuse those who carry out atrocities.

Jeremy Corbyn wasn’t placing the blame on the British state and removing it from people who plant bombs in public places and blow up children. He was very clear that the bombers and those who supported and supplied them have the responsibility for the attack. He most certainly wasn’t legitimising the planting of a bomb at a concert venue. What he was saying is that we must understand what causes people to take these appalling actions if we want to stop them happening in the future. This is not a complex point. If you want to tackle drug crime, you need to understand what causes people to use drugs. If you want to tackle the crimes of terrorism, you need to understand what causes people to adopt terrorist tactics.

The crucial point is that terrorism doesn’t happen in a vacuum. UK foreign policy is clearly a part of the narrative. Terrorism doesn’t happen simply because there are bad people in the world. Terrorism has a context, and if we want to prevent terrorism we need to understand its whole context, not just those parts of it that make us feel comfortable. And it is an uncomfortable truth that when those who commit or support violent and extreme acts of terrorism based on a perverted version of Islam are questioned about their motives and what caused them to be radicalised in the first place, time after time they cite British foreign policy as a motivating factor. They cite the fact that Britain supports vile dictators and supplies them with arms and weapons. They cite the wars and destruction that the UK has wrought on a succession of countries. They cite the unjustified and unjustifiable war in Iraq which left that country in ruins and which unleashed the demons of IS.

None of this justifies terrorism of course, but if as a society we wish to prevent people from going down the path that leads to a suicide bombing in a crowded arena, we need to understand what causes them to take the first steps, so that they can be stopped from going any further.

Despite that, Corbyn’s nuanced and careful remarks were leapt on by Boris Johnson and Michael Fallon, both of them cheerleaders for supplying arms and weapons to dictators around the world in the name of British exports, and both of whom were quick to accuse Corbyn of legitimising terrorism. Not for the first time Boris Johnson is wrong and self-serving. The person seeking to make political capital out of the deaths of children in Manchester is the vile buffoon who carelessly tosses out racist remarks and serially insults foreign leaders.

Corbyn’s remarks were equally leapt on by Tim Farron, the opportunistic leader of the Lib Dems. Despite his own opposition to the Iraq War which he described as illegal and counterproductive and leading to the failed Iraqi state we see today where terrorist groups flourish, Farron criticised Corbyn for making the exact same points.

Theresa May and her followers have no solutions to terrorism. All they have is the theatre of security gestures, of increased security checks at airports, of armed soldiers on the street, of increased surveillance and the erosion of civil rights. They seek to diminish the symptoms of terrorism but have nothing to say about the causes beyond simplistic nostrums about bad people committing evil deeds. There’s no guarantee that Corbyn’s approach will lead to an answer, to an end to the atrocities and the deaths, both in this country and abroad, but at least he’s attempting to begin to address the underlying causes. That’s something he deserves to be praised for, something he deserves support for. He is correct to point out that the only reason there are armed soldiers on the streets of England is because when she was Home Secretary Theresa May slashed police budgets and numbers. The SNP likewise recognises that there’s a bigger and more complex picture, saying today that the role of the UK and its foreign wars should not be off limits in discussions of terrorism. Complex and difficult problems have complex and difficult solutions. On this, as on so many other issues, the Tories have no answers. They only promise more of the same.

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59 comments on “Looking at the bigger picture

  1. […] Wee Ginger Dug Looking at the bigger picture […]

  2. Robert Harrison says:

    This is the state being asked the correct questions and not liking it that’s what this demonising jc is all about I don’t like the guy for trying to strangle Scottish democracy but here he’s asked the right questions in the right situation

  3. TSD says:

    Reblogged this on Ramblings of a 50+ Female and commented:
    Talking sense as always.

  4. Harry Vimes says:

    As we are talking about context here as an aid to problem solving some facts detailed in the two links below seem pertinent:

    http://www.middleeasteye.net/news/sorted-mi5-how-uk-government-sent-british-libyans-fight-gaddafi-1219906488

    http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/47122.htm

  5. Macart says:

    A great post Paul and couldn’t agree more.

    Much like yourself, I’m no fan of Mr Corbyn’s stance on pretty much anything to do with Scotland, but he deserved a better hearing on this issue and is to be commended for his thoughtful contribution.

  6. Jan Cowan says:

    I totally agree with you, Paul. JC appears to be one of the few truly honest politicians in England. I do hope for the sake of their country’s future they wake up and dismiss May and her so-called “team”.
    It is possible that we in Scotland could persuade Corbyn to look on us as an independent and friendly neighbour.

  7. benmadigan says:

    this was written a few days before the Manchester Arena Bombing .

    In my view Mr corbyn ‘s victory would be the best thing for England and probably northern ireland –
    not so much for Scotland as, like Paul said, he does not Scottish independence in any shape or form

    https://eurofree3.wordpress.com/2017/05/21/corbyn-for-pm-its-a-great-british-thing/

  8. Marconatrix says:

    “the [British Labour] party needs Scotland in order to secure power in Westminster”

    In Scotland these days the SNP rules whilst ‘Scottish’ (so called) ‘Labour’ (really?) seems like a spent force.

    Isn’t the solution then blindingly obvious? Team up with the only viable socialist party in north of the Border, hold your nose Corbyn and ally with the SNP. Could it really be worse than a Lib-Lab pact? Don’t you anyway work with republicans in NI? Time to act like a real politician … by ditching your pathetic comrades … ha-ha! 🙂

    • Saor Alba says:

      This is the obvious solution Marconatrix, but are they intelligent or honest enough to embrace it?
      The red Tories have made a coalition with BlueKip in Aberdeen. Who knew it? I fear that Slab do NOT have the honesty, the integrity or the bravery to recognise the good that the SNP have done. Individuals have done so and have changed their views, but the party is weak, with one of the weakest, shouty and least effective or persuasive political leaders ever. If only they could rid themselves of their hatred then they could perhaps cure their blindness.

  9. broadbield says:

    May and her cohort of warmongers could look closer to home and learn some lessons from a province just across the water – address the grievances, don’t collude with one bunch of gangsters just because it suits your “world” agenda and, of course, do what every politician in power says they won’t do but does in secret: talk to the “terrorists” and understand there is no military solution.

  10. TheStrach says:

    The actions of successive UK governments have not made us safer; quite the opposite.

    Corbyn is right to raise the context in which these attrocities happen.

    We can play our part by dissolving the UK and showing how a modern social democratic country should behave.

  11. Col says:

    I’d love to see the day where Europe unites against the causes of terrorism on our doorstep. When America is made to face up to decades of destruction and misery. Where Europeans pay with their lives. I doubt that will happen though because unfortunately there’s a few European nations just as guilty as them.
    I’m excited though today that Corbyn has brought this centre stage. I hope it’s just the start of a wider debate and I can only dream that this was the point where people actually had their views crystalize into a real anti war movement with balls.

  12. Of course, catching a glance at the Daily Express and Daily Mail headlines re Corbyn’s speech you’d be led to believe in fact that he had said that the British State were to blame. What chance is there for any real progressive dialogue in that corrupt and toxic context?

    Interestingly enough, it was pointed out by an Economist diagram that the non-combatants in the Iraq war – Belgium, France and Germany is where the majority of terrorist attacks/western fatalities have taken place. Hence, reasons for why and where Jihadist terrorism occurs will be complex.

    https://www.theguardian.com/politics/live/2017/may/26/general-election-2017-terror-corbyn-may-g7-sicily-politics-live

    • ockletycockletywitch says:

      What chance indeed! The likes of Murdoch and The Barclay Bros. ensure that debate is closed down and the facts suppressed “with extreme prejudice”. The right-wing press and media in the UK as a whole are an absolute disgrace to the profession of journalism.

  13. ockletycockletywitch says:

    Thank you for an excellent analysis of the situation, as usual. I have two hats where it comes to politics, being born English (and still having many friends and family in England) but now being Scottish in thought, word and (hopefully) deed, I am often conflicted about what Labour is and what it stands for. As far as Scotland is concerned, I agree with every word you say about Mr Corbyn and his attitude to matters Caledonian. But for my loved-ones in England, I cannot help wishing to see him defeat the May harridan utterly!

    The dastardly attacks and slurs by the Tories and the MSM on a man who has the clearest-thinking views, on terrorism in particular and international affairs in general, are little short of criminal. However, coming fresh from the labyrinthine coils of the ToL comment threads today, I am happy to report that many more people seem to be seeing TM for what she is and rethinking their opinions of JC. “Treesa” may wish that people would forget her actions as Home Secretary (repealing the law concerning Control Orders, decimating the Police & Security Services etc.) but memories have been re-awakened by the appalling events in Manchester and people are starting to realise how short-sighted her policies were … and still are.

    So – whilst I wish Scottish Labour an ignominious defeat in the coming General Election at the hands of the SNP – I cannot help wishing Labour in EngWales a resounding victory over May and her cabal of Tory throw-backs.

    • benmadigan says:

      well said Ocletycockletywitch
      All our best wishes are for Labour winning in England,SNP sweeping the boards in Scotland (because neither a Conservatives nor a Labour majority in Westminster is good news for Scotland), SF making inroads in Northern ireland and Plaid Cymru and/or Labour winning in Wales.

    • Saor Alba says:

      Agreed.

  14. Alba woman says:

    Excellent post OCW…

    All Those beautiful children and young people lost forever. They are such a loss not only to their parents and family but to our society. We will have to reflect upon our responsibility in choosing those whose top priority is the care and protection of children and young people. Our pieces of gold.

  15. maxi says:

    I would rather have Corbyn than obvious puppet May in power in England as he seems a better human being, but he is still a unionist with views that are insulting to the Scottish quest for total independence from Westminster. We could be his friend but his anti-independence stance has put him in my view at this moment in time solidly in the enemy camp.

  16. AnnieM says:

    Corbyn came across much better than May on the Andrew Neill interview tonight – not that it would be hard because she was a shambles. He comes across as much better PM material than May. Oh how I hope and pray that her cynical snap election comes back and bites her on the bum by at least reducing her majority if not defeating her completely!

  17. He he shades of the USA Presidential election.

    MRS BAD or MR BAD some choice but for England

    My vote would be for Mr Bad and then we can see if NS can sort out JC

    Hoping of course that the weak and wobbly Giraffe falls on her arse big time and we either have a Hung Parliament (now that would be nice and give more power to the SNP) or Labour wins with a small but big enough majority to put the Tory’s back in their box.

    Interesting times indeed

    My heart goes out to all those in any way involved in the Manchester atrocity.

  18. Welcome back, Paul; trust you had a great time. An excellent observation of Corbyn.
    For all his faults in relation to Scotland , he is still a decent man and whilst I’m stuck in the English West March he’ll be getting my vote. He’s the only hope of a better England currently on offer.
    Scotland, fortunately has an alternative of its own… 😀

  19. Andy Anderson says:

    I agree with you 100% Paul.

    The West created IS due to 2003 Iraq war, and The Code with the anti Russian war in Afghanistan. The governments of the West are reaping what we sowed but it is the ordinary punter that usually pays the price. Look at Libya, we supply arms to remove Gadaffi and then walk away leaving chaos. No wonder extremism grows. Link to Manchester here.

  20. Charl von Hoesslin says:

    I posted this earlier on the Guardian about Jeremys statement:

    Having actually lived in another country that went through terrorism due to the governments policies, I agree with Jeremy and his statement saying that terrorism and foreign policy are linked. Another reason for home grown terrorism can be the link between hate crimes and minorities, in no way an excuse but when so little is done by police to stop or investigate hate crimes it is of little wonder that there are extremists in our midst.

  21. m boyd says:

    May looked pathetic at the G7. Completely excluded from the ” in crowd” . She is an embarrassment to this once great nation.

    • Andy Anderson says:

      Great as in “Britain” you must mean. I understand the sentiment but what does Great mean? The British empire peaked about 1900 and then stagnated up to 1947 when it fell apart. We, Britain have been declining since WW1 and we are still doing so politically and economically.

      • Marconatrix says:

        1947? Why did you pick that year?

        BTW “Great Britain” is simply a geographical term meaning the entire island of England, Wales and Scotland. Historically “Little Britain” was Brittany, so called because it was settled by Britons keen to get away from the advancing Saxon (i.e. English) hordes.

        • Andy Anderson says:

          1947 was the start of countries leaving the Empire. India left in 1947 and East and West Pakistan was created. This caused over 1 million dead.

          • Marconatrix says:

            OK, that explains the date, thanks.

            As for a million dead, are you saying things would have been better if the Empire had continued? I suppose it could be argued that British rule in India/Pakistan, Cyprus, Palestine, etc. etc. simply put local quarrels on hold until the common enemy had been seen off. In other words the disasters were simply accidents waiting to happen which quite probably would have been even worse the longer they were postponed?

            • Lanark says:

              It could be said that the rot set in for the Empire in 1922 with the secession of the Irish Free State.

  22. Guga says:

    It should come as no surprise to anyone that things have developed the way they have. People and their governments have continually ignored history and the lessons to be learned from it. In addition, the human race has remained ignorant, ill informed, and interested only in self gratification, greed and the lust for power.

    Ever since humans formed tribes, communities, city states etc., they have sought to dominate others; thus the rise of empires came about, with the strongest trying to dominate the weakest. Throughout history, these empires and would be empires have invaded, slaughtered, annexed and exploited others at every opportunity – and this attitude continues to this very day.

    In modern times, the European empires, especially since the end of the Second World War, have faded, though the French imperialists continued to try to hang on to Indo-China. This particular idiocy resulted in the Vietnam war with millions of people dead, maimed and poisoned.

    The American empire, since its inception in 1776, has spent most of its existence in wars with a great assortment of countries. The American imperialists have followed the standard pattern of invading, slaughtering, annexing and exploiting these countries, along with the more modern action of regime change. They are responsible for the murders of millions of people (including the genocide of the native Americans). The American financed (mainly through bribes) regimes were generally right wing, totally corrupt dictatorships. Little wonder then that there is so much anti-American feeling amongst many of the world’s people.

    The English, every since leaving their own lands in Germany and invading our country, have been almost continually at war against the native people of this country, and, since the beginnings of their overseas empire, with a great assortment of other countries. Again, they have followed the standard pattern of invading, slaughtering, annexing and exploiting these countries. They, like the Americans, are responsible for the murders of millions of people. Little wonder that there is so much anti-English feeling amongst many of the world’s people.

    The English, with their toadying to the Americans, have come to believe that being America’s poodle somehow keeps the “British Empire” and the “Raj” alive. They glory, in their mindset, that they remain a major power as opposed to, in reality, being a very third rate power.

    The attitude of the Americans and the English has resulted in ordinary people throughout the world despising them; and their continuing actions in invading and/or bombing any sovereign state that does not kow-tow to their wishes or demands increases the disgust and contempt of many, many people. It is little wonder that some people want to strike back at these imperialists that won’t mind their own business, and stop interfering in sovereign states.

    This then, is one of the many reasons why Scotland needs to regain its independence, as we should not want to be associated in any way with imperialist thugs and bullies that think little of destroying/controlling sovereign states to, among other things, prop up their military/industrial complex.

  23. angusskye says:

    Not what we expected to be discussing 2 weeks before a general election. General elections come and go but this situation goes on and on and will continue to do so until we can stop the UK sticking its snout in where it does not belong. Can we actually do that? There is absolutely no likelihood at the moment whilst the UK continues to vote for a Tory party, the political wing of corporate business which heartlessly profits from worldwide conflict.

    The best we can do (in so many ways!) is to remove ourselves from the UK. As internationalists that does not mean we will stick our heads in the sand but maybe .. just maybe .. it will encourage the electorate in the remaining UK to wake up.

  24. junius45 says:

    How they cheered when Hillary Benn cast his vote to bomb Syria. Oh how they cheered!

  25. Bugger (the Panda) says:

    Corbyn’s true political niche is as a conscience for Labour. He is happiest doing that but, as a Leader, he not.

    How then he cannot grasp the logic and right of the People of Scotland to self determination?

    Simply because it would tear apart his beloved Labour Party.

  26. Ruth says:

    Unfortunately I think”more of the same” suits the tories quite well. A bit of civil rights erosion can only work to their benefit while allowing them to be “strong and stable” to folks who don’t think very hard.

  27. gus1940 says:

    Slightly O/T but something that has attracted little attention and discussion.

    Just what is the point of the 2 White Elephants nearing completion at Rosyth?

    Initiated under Labour and continued with great enthusiasm and flag waving by the Tories I am at pains to see how they could possibly be regarded as part of this country’s defence.

    What they are are means to project power over other countries i.e. continuing invading and bombing other countries at the behest of The US in a vain attempt to continue the illusion that The UK is still a major power while driving more and more people to develop a hatred of us and for the crazier ones to embark on atrocities such as the horrendous attack in Manchester.

    • Andy Anderson says:

      They are white elephants Gus but it is Trident that is the huge mega elephant. No planes and not enough crew either to man the ship’s. The Royal Navy is a poor joke when you compare it to 40 years ago.

  28. hoplite39 says:

    I live in an English constituency with a Tory MP, Labour being the nearest rival. I was thinking of voting Green like I did in GE2015 out of solidarity. But I have decided to tactically lend by vote to the English Labour Party in the likely vain hope of overturning the 10k Tory majority.

    Labour is not my first choice. I would prefer to vote SNP (or PC in Wales), Green or LibDem (in that order) before them.

    I don’t regard myself as a socialist. I even admit that I am not as progressive as many in the pro-Indy community. I also do not support independence at all costs. But at the moment, I believe the biggest threat to Scotland and the rUK are the Tories and UKIP.

    I liked the bit where you say that a God which drives anyone to murder is actually a demon. I agree with this.

    • hettyforindy says:

      Why do you not ‘support independence at all costs’? Of course we know that with brexit, if england did have to go it alone, without Scotland, without Scotland’s oil and other resources, Eng would be bankrupt.

      Scotland has been had, the union was brought about by a few rogues, it was planned and orchestrated over a long period of time by the English. They knew what they were doing, didn’t one of them say something like, ‘ha! now we have Scotland, (lolz) and we will KEEP her!’

      No, Scotland must become independent of Eng, it will be better for both, but Scotland needs to move forward now, and to continue to grow, to work for the actual people of Scotland. Those in WM, can then concentrate on the day job, in making england more 21st century country.

      The SNP are doing a pretty good job of managing to improve the lives of people here in Scotland, with minimal devolved powers, limited finances (WM takes all revenues and hands pocket money back) and very much tethered by WM.

      Wish Eng best of luck, but Scotland cannot be expected to be happy being treated as second class, being ridiculed and treated with contempt at WM, and be happy to take the crumbs handed out.
      Not a situation which can go on for much longer.

      • hoplite39 says:

        Hi hettyforindy,

        I actually agree with everything you say. When I say I do not support Indy at all costs, I have to qualify my statement. Currently, I do support independence because I do not believe there will ever be a truly fair relationship between Scotland and England. So at this moment, I am in the Indy wagon and unlikely to get off.

        In theory, if the Union parties came up with a plan that would effectively give Scotland devo-max within a progressive UK, I would prefer this over Indy. However, at the moment, such an scenario seems to be extremely unlikely.

        The Unionist parties only offer the status quo at best. For me, that is not good enough. So Indy is the only option.

        However, the truth remains that I could (at least in theory) be persuaded to accept Scotland being part of the Union. Currently, the Unionist parties are making me more convinced Indy is necessary, not less.

        I am a Scot, living in England. I support Indy as the best solution for a prosperous Scotland. But I also live in the knowledge that I will benefit from Scotland’s failure to achieve Indy (since I believe that Scotland subsidises England). It is a consolation, but not the ideal one.

  29. faolie says:

    I’d imagine a lot of voters in England agree with this (if only because the Establishment and the MSM are shrieking loudly in hypocritical condemnation), and that more of what Jez says chimes with their own thoughts. Add that to May’s pathetic campaign and her car-crash interviews and u-turns, it’s no wonder that the opinion polls are narrowing.

    Conservative Central Office must be crapping themselves

    • AnnieM says:

      I think it’s an absolute disgrace that TM can call an election and then refuse point blank to debate with other leaders. She should not be allowed to put someone in to speak for her, but should be empty-chaired. It’s also ridiculous that Corbyn will not debate if she doesn’t. That’s like kids in the playground shouting, “Nah, nah, nahna, nah, I’m not playing if she’s not playing”. Grow up the pair of you!

  30. Kat hamilton says:

    Fear the right wing media in England will play dirty with JC and undermine his credibility regarding foreign policy…play him up as an IRa sympathiser, lefty lunatic, and dangerous allowing him near Downing Street…familiar stuff that’s for sure..been doing that since he was overwhelmingly elected as leader,..whilst I couldn’t support his party in scotia, in England he’s by far the best option for democracy and justice which will never come about under mayhem…please England, wake up and see what the blue brigade are turning your country into…fear the selfish, me first attitudes still prevail in the leafy suburbs down south, kipperised and unable to save itself….at least JC did say he wouldn’t oppose a second indy ref, unlike kez who has nothing to offer but hollow, shallow words when an apology should be made at the very least for slabs alignment with hard unionism during indy 1…won’t wait around for that to happen….

  31. hettyforindy says:

    Great article. Great sadness at what happened in Manchester.

    Regards Jeremy, it’s weird. He seems to espouse a democratic, socially just style of politics, yet has he not said that he is totally against another Scottish independence referendum.

    We should ask him why he is so adamant that Scotland should be denied an opportunity as a democratic right, to hold a referendum?

    The people on the left in England, are desperate for JC to win the GE. If you mention that he is no friend of Scotland, (as I do with friends in eng) they don’t care. Some see him as a saviour, because he is Labour. I hope he wins and keeps to his (proposed) SNP type policies, for England’s sake.

    But it is a concern, can he be trusted? Will he really stick to his words on improving the lot of the workers, and put money into the ENHS? And what of Trident, would he go ahead with renewal if he did become PM? Happy to have them based in bonny Scotland? Would he actually remove money from England’s so called block grant, which the UK treasury condescends to send to Scotland from her revenues. They call it a grant, as though it is a top up to some ficticious cash that Scotland has down the back of the sofa, rather than almost every penny made here, having been taken by WM!

    A family member of mine even last year asked how we would survive without them, ie england, ‘without the oil?’ I really don’t think he believed it when I said that Scotland does and never has really seen a penny of the oil money in fact. A bit like the myth of subsidy junkie, they really do think they pay for Scotland to have ‘free’ prescriptions and no tuition fees, seeing it as a direct tax on their own meagre wages, it’s what the yoons have told them so must be true.

    Been watching some short films on the National Library of Scotlands online, ‘image archive’. You can ‘browse and search’ through years, genre, etc, but two of the best so far, are, ‘Prospect of Scotland’, 1975, all about Scotland’s industries. “The 2nd most industrialised country in the world” the queens english voice over tells us.

    An eye opener into what Scotland has been used for, under the so called union.

    Then, ‘Quiet country’. An english man’s view of Scotland, 1972. It begins with the wife being scared of the long, long scary journey (open top car) north and hubby with map, saying it’s ok, look it’s not too far really! ‘Northern Britain’ beckons, a rich mans playground, like a big Lake district, with every kind of leisure activity, yaughting, golf, sailing, skiing etc.

    Anyway, many films to watch about Scotland, which raise more questions than were intended I am sure. The oil for instance. With all of the industry and new infrastructure, anyone could be forgiven for thinking that Scotland was the main beneficiary of the obvious riches from this modern, industrial, resource rich country.

    I might be wrong, but I suspect the main benefit to Scotland being much needed jobs and a couple of new towns to house the workers, nothing more. A workforce, while resources were literally shipped out of Scotland.

    Where did all the money go when Scotland was the ‘2nd most industrialised country in the WORLD’, I wonder. Hm?

  32. Rhisiart Gwilym says:

    Don’t forget, Paul, that the USukiznato-axis has actually *supported* the takfiri-crazies/international-mercenaries rampaging around the Middle East, with money, propaganda, arms, materiel, training, diplomatic cover, special-force ‘advisors’, air-attacks, and on, and continues to do so.

    This is *active support*, not just provoking an inevitable backlash response from the aggrieved peoples of the ME through the criminal foreign policy of the axis states – though it’s that too. It’s pretty clear by now that lots of Western actors, particularly the CIA, the Pentagon, and the secret-state outfits of the ukstate, MI6 and friends, have been quite active in partisan SUPPORT for the terrorists, in pursuit of their own amoral global realpolitik. Over a hundred million dollars of funding already for the lying, child-murdering, criminal gangsters of the Shite Helmets propaganda racket, for example; Nobel Peace Prize nominees even, FFS! Thank god wide-enough protests squashed that monstrous perversion of an idea; as bad as Obama getting it.

    This broad swathe of widely-documented fact also remains outside the Overton-window limitations of what can be spoken of in polite society within the ukstate’s corporate-mediahack/pocket-politician delusion bubble.

    Though I back the idea of JC for PM of the Paedominster parliament, I haven’t seen him yet air widely these proven and crucially-pertinent facts. Even so, it’s started to leak out unstoppably since the Manchester bomb that MI6 and friends within the ukstate secret forces have been cultivating, protecting, and making realpolitikal use of a exiles-nest of LIFG takfiri-crazies, including the Abedi family – mostly in Manchester itself – for years; direct support, and manipulation to commit terrorist atrocities in other countries, undeniably; so why not here too…?

    Craig Murray asserts that he knows lots of Brits in the diplomatic and secret-forces communities, and he’s sure that none of them would ever countenance the creation of false-flag terrorism in Britain, against ‘their own people’. But I have a hunch that that could just be Craig’s naive streak showing again.

  33. Arthur thomson says:

    Sorry guys but in my opinion Corbyn is a fraud. He is old style Labour who were different from but no better than the Blairites who pushed them aside. What they had in common was being self-serving. They exploited the plight of the vulnerable to promote their ideological delusions – Blair for a Crusade and Corbyn for socialist imperialism. Corbyn views the sacrifice of Scottish aspirations as a minimal price to pay in the interests of MUCH more important matters.

    Corbyn is not progressive, he is just a cunning anachronism. A fraud who is no friend of Scotland.

    What was it he said about an independent Scotland and austerity?

    What he said about British foreign policy has a ring of truth in it but any con man ensures that there is an element of truth in his pitch to the gullible.

    I know people are desperate to see some hope somewhere in the British state but for heaven’s sake please judge Corbyn by his actions not his weasel words. Think back to his actions supporting the Tories against the vulnerable and against Scotland at Westminster.

    For everyone’s sake I hope that May sees no increase in political power because she is the nasty leader of the nasty party but neither do I want to see Corbyn in a position of power. They are as bad as each other. England needs to recognise that their political system is toxic and change it. They need a social Democratic, non ideological alternative, not a self-serving duopoly. Corbyn’s Labour have no interest in meaningful change, just in getting back into power.

    Sad but true.

    • ockletycockletywitch says:

      You are, of course, entitled to your opinion but I could NOT disagree with you more about Mr Corbyn. The one thing he is not is self-serving – if he were, he could have compromised and made peace with the Blairite elements of Labour, which he has steadfastly refused to do. The Blairites have “no interest in meaningful change, just in getting back into power” but you are quite wrong to tar Mr Corbyn with that same brush.

    • TheStrach says:

      I’ve been impressed with Corbyn during this campaign but the following issues rule him out of contention for my vote (I live down south).

      1. Does not support fair voting as that would break the duopoly you refer to.

      2. The Labour manifesto supports weapons of mass destruction.

      3. Would deny Scotland’s right to choose its own future.

      • ockletycockletywitch says:

        I defer, of course, to your right to vote – or not to vote – for whomever you choose. I agree that I would prefer him to tackle electoral reform and to disavow the UK’s obsession with Trident. I have long given up expecting any Party in England to give any ground on Scotland’s indubitable right to choose its own future.

        All that said, if I were voting South of the Border I would still be voting for him (a) because his is the only Party with a manifesto that is actually FOR the people and (b) because his is the only Party with even the remotest of chance of unseating the unspeakable Tories. These two things would matter more to me than anything else if I were an English or Welsh voter.

    • Marconatrix says:

      You may well be correct, Arthur, but you present no solution for voters outwith Scotland, who let’s admit will almost certainly determine who is the next PM, a choice between bad and terrible, maybe? Maybe not??

      We are where we are, not in some hypothetical ideal world that presents a real meaningful choice. You remind me of a classic Irish joke :
      Traveller : Kind sir, please show me the best road to Dublin …
      Local : Oh, If I were going to Dublin I wouldn’t be starting from here …

      But we are where we are …

      • ockletycockletywitch says:

        My sentiments also, Marconatrix, The least worst option for voters not fortunate enough to live in Scotland and have a clear alternative.

  34. You absolutely hit the nail on the head there! From one Scottish person to another, brilliant post👏🏻👏🏻

  35. It’s amazing how many people seem to think that more of the same is going to work. I’ve tried to have conversations with people about the causes of terrorism just to be met with primal rants about Islam and immigration. I can only hope that with the right-wing press’s vitriol and dominance were challenged enough by the outcome of the election that more nuanced conversations about why these things happen can take place. There’s always a reason people do what they do. Asking questions isn’t validating terrorism. However, watching the ham-fistedness with which Theresa May is currently toying with the DUP in the name of propping up her power, with total disregard for the political outcome in Northern Ireland, doesn’t fill me with confidence that the Tories have got the joined-up thinking required to take a different approach to tackling terrorism.

    • ockletycockletywitch says:

      Most of them, in spite of a lot of very expensive private educations, can barely manage joined-up writing, let alone joined-up thinking!

      Right-Wing parties across the globe have absolutely no interest in calling a halt to extremism and terrorism because it serves their narrative and their philosophy just the way it is. They govern through fear and division – terrorism is their best ally. Not to mention all the lovely money that is to be made from selling arms to everyone on both sides of this “war on terror”!

      Looking to Conservatives to resolve terrorism is like employing a pack of wolves to guard your sheep!

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