The self-delusions of a British nationalist

There’s a test that scientists use to discover whether a species possesses self-awareness. They anaesthetise an animal and paint a dot on its forehead using an odourless and chemically inert paint. When the animal wakens, it is presented with a mirror, it it reacts to the image in the mirror by attempting to examine the dot on its own forehead, it’s taken as a reliable indicator that the the species possesses self-awareness. Great apes pass the test, so do Asian elephants, dolphins, and orcas, proving that they are sensitive and thoughtful creatures. Failing the test is taken as demonstrating a lack of self-awareness. Baboons fail it. And so, at least given his performance speechifying on Monday, would Michael Gove.

The occasion was a series of lectures to a less than packed house about the State of the Union. It was a Better Together reunion gig, with added DUP.  You know, bigots for inclusivity.  The event was a desperate attempt to come up with some new arguments to deploy in a future Scottish independence referendum seeing as how they’ve broken all the arguments they trotted out the last time. Scottish nationalism is parochial and insular. Oh wait. Valued partner in a family of nations. Oops hang on. Europe won’t want you. Eh, give us a minute we’ll get something in a bit. Why risk the safety and security of the UK. Ah, oh, eh, uhmm.

Featuring a line up of has-beens, never-weres, and never-will-bes, they could have saved themselves, and us, a lot of bother by simply admitting that there is no Union only an incorporating state that really doesn’t trouble itself with the opinions of its Celtic peripheries. However in a day of magical thinking and unhinged self-delusion, it was Michael Gove’s brass neck which shone the shiniest. During the EU referendum campaign Michael complained that people were fed up with experts. He’s certainly proving that people are fed up with politicians who are expert in prattling such utter guff as he does.

Michael was terribly concerned to tell us all how vile Scottish nationalism is, what with it being, according to him, divisive identity politics.  According to one of the leading proponents of the anti-immigration politics of taking back control for Britain, identity politics are a bad thing. You don’t say, Michael. You don’t say. Once again a leading British nationalist proves that the defining characteristic of British nationalism is the unshakeable belief that it’s better than other nationalisms by virtue of not being nationalist at all.

Not that any of this should be surprising. We’re talking here about a man who asserts, with an entirely straight face insofar as Michael Gove is capable of being straight about anything, that Britain has become more welcoming to immigration since the Brexit vote. That rise in hate crimes against ethnic minorities since the EU referendum is entirely coincidental then, and the Home Office’s hostile environment for immigrants magically turned into a fluffy cushion the day after the referendum. This from a man who went about in 2016 warning of a mythical influx of 70 million Turkish people. There are people whose lips are firmly attached to a crack pipe who have a better grasp of reality.

It may be technically true to claim that public attitudes towards immigration have softened since the Brexit vote, but there is no evidence that this is directly because of the Brexit vote. It is far more likely that any softening in public attitudes towards immigration since the Brexit vote is because of a widespread revulsion towards the rise in hate crimes caused by weaponising of immigration by the likes of Michael Gove, and a sympathy with and empathy for migrants that is entirely alien to the government that Michael is a part of.

In any event the softening in public attitudes towards immigration has not been accompanied by any softening in government policy, quite the reverse. Michael Gove has made people feel revulsion and anger towards what he and his fellow Brexiteers have done, and then seeks to take credit for it like he’s done us all a good turn. It’s a bit like someone who robbed candy from a baby taking the credit for people feeling greater sympathy for the baby since the candy robbing incident. And then appearing all smug in the national press to tell us what a great guy he is for making people feel sympathetic towards the baby whose candy he’s scoffing.

Michael’s self-serving claims about immigration were bad enough, but they were by no means the least delusional of his claims, and this let us remember from a man who is hailed by his party as one of the Conservatives’ leading intellectuals. But then you look at Ross Thomson and David Mundell and think, well yeah, they have a point.

There was the claim that Brexit was motivated by a desire to restore public trust in British institutions. How’s that working out for you all then? But even that howler wasn’t the worst of it. The highlight of the speech was the claim that Brexit has made the Union stronger and that Scottish nationalism is in retreat. That’s what comes of taking all your information about the state of Scottish politics from Ruth Davidson’s press releases. So that’s Michael, and most of the British nationalist press in Scotland then.

The reality is of course the exact opposite of what’s going on in Michael’s red white and blue reveries, Brexit has energised, enthused, and activated the Scottish independence movement. We’re not talking any more about if there should be another referendum, the only debate is about the timing of one. All across Scotland, independence groups are getting themselves organised, developing strategies, working on preparations for the campaign ahead. All this is happening because of Brexit, and because of the repeated failure of the British state to take account of the views of the people of Scotland.

What Michael Gove and the other speakers at the Better Together reunion gig can’t accept is that we are where we are because of their failures and shortcomings. If they have fulfilled their promises to Scotland, we wouldn’t be planning for and preparing for another independence referendum. There wouldn’t be the largest march and rally seen in Scotland since the Iraq War protests, calling for independence. The British state isn’t breaking apart because of Scottish nationalism. It’s breaking apart because of British nationalism.


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50 comments on “The self-delusions of a British nationalist

  1. John Lowe says:

    Excellent again. The sheer affrontery of that lot and the lies and misinformation they gave out was astounding

  2. Therapymum says:

    As usual, correct Paul! I read some of the statements by Gove, Murphy, Davidson et al on Twitter, and it’s interesting that they chose to have the meeting in London, rather than Scotland. Not exactly living up to Davidson’s assertions that the union should be less London-centric. Anyone who is unsure about Indyref2 would do well to read some of those statements and judge their veracity. Might go a long way to help the 7% shift over to Yes. Even if they aren’t Indy supporters now, they will be able to see the disconnect between what the participants said and reality.

  3. Dan Huil says:

    “The British state isn’t breaking apart because of Scottish nationalism. It’s breaking apart because of British nationalism.”


  4. […] Wee Ginger Dug The self-delusions of a British nationalist There’s a test that scientists use to discover whether a species possesses […]

  5. Rod MacKay says:

    And today, Brandon Lewis gives us English excepionalism, arrogance and poor education in one tweet.

  6. robert harrison says:

    They will never see they are at fault for this lies broken promises the britnats actually believe they fulfilled their end when its clear they can never be trusted ever as they never delivered a single promise back then or even now as they want Scotland to bow down and accept direct rule the English conservatives and there so called Scottish puppets can all fak of

  7. john 59 says:

    Excellent post yet again Paul. o/t but did you know we have a chance at a currency union when independent . NAW yer fine we,l just gie it a miss thanks !!!

  8. Robert Graham says:

    Remember the reaction of English people just before the 2014 vote ,they were genuinely shocked that the Union was in danger and in a few days might be gone.

    Much the same with this Tory guff ,they are trying to present a totally false impression of what is happening here , everything is going swell no problems in the northern colonial outpost , all under control .nothing to worry about.

    This is how out of touch this lot are, the recent surveys asking English people’s views on was the break up of the Union an acceptable price to pay for a good Brexit deal, the resulting yes replies were a total embarrassment to the proud Scottish Unionists. They are not wanted they are surplus to requirements oh dear how sad , to find out all the arse licking was in vain ,all ditching of principles was for nothing , Waken up yah bunch of suckers you were used, and a final word of condolence from this Independence supporter f/k the lot of you ,you were warned

  9. Robert Graham says:

    Late breaking news- Because I just noticed it.
    Currency union being discussed by the governor of the Bank of England, with all due respect Mark tell your English bosses to stick their pound right up their collective Arses . We don’t want to use yer scabby pound especially if it has Bank of England stamped on it .

  10. Patience is a Virtue says:

    Fundily-mundily, the extent to which Scotland’s opinion is held and valued within the Union is out there for all to see, What is the benefit of any Union where your Country’s democratic vote may be and is ignored,

    and if you may disagree with what is ‘proposed’ ….by others who had already to signed-up to honour the devolved settlement – It takes a particular kind of warmth and affection to dream up recent servings / Amendments where your ‘disagreement’ or your ‘failure to provide an answer’ will be interpreted as your ‘agreement’…. it matters not one jot.

    You will note how that even when you fail to sign up (always read the small print) to such a weasel- worded kind offer and vote to the contrary 93/30, your ‘disagreement’ is still ignored (see para 2 above where your disagreement = your agreement), you can see that there is a common theme,

    In this 50th Anniversary of the best selling novel Catch 22, as events unfold, we can perhaps look forward to other weasel-worded clauses like…. you can contact us to discuss your problem and register your non-approval/disagreement, but only when we are not in.

  11. bedelsten says:

    Ah! The Govefish, a man with no sole, carping on again and spouting pollocks. But why now? Why has that bunch of has-beens etc., got together for one more gig, lip syncing to a backing track of 2014’s broken records? Haven’t they got any new material? (Well, yes, they have, and it’s pish as well.) Something has disturbed the waters and the leviathan has stirred. In the dungeons below, gordzilla is testing the manacles and may emerge to pace the stage once more, uttering vows under its breath. The rhetoric knob is being turned all the way up to 11.

    Was it the march of, I am told, over 90,000? Was it the social media response to the Herald’s hole digging? Has there been some private polling? Oil prices? Record levels employment? The appearing, however briefly, on the telly?

    Whatever it is, keep it up lads and lassies of the unionist camp. You are doing a wonderful job advertising the (absence of) benefits of being the vassal region of northern Britain whilst seemingly happy to be the vassal state of Europe for an indeterminate period of time. Two faced? The fish with more plaices than the town clock.

    • Rees Mogg delivering Project Fear ’18’s Sermon on the Mound would be just too much to ask, wouldn’t it?
      Paul, in sparkling form as usual, nails it.
      A serial child killer prompts the community to protect their children. Said serial killer congratulates themselves for raising parents game in looking after their children?
      We are reaching breaking point on Brexit.
      The Darling Duds of May, Davis, Johnson, Fox, and Gove have nothing in hand upon which to base any EU Divorce negotiations.
      The ‘successful’ Round One in January was no such thing.
      There is still no resolution to the Irish Border issue, no final divorce Bill, nor is the status of 3 million EU nationals propping up England and the 1.4 million ‘Ex pat’ silver surfers and Brit employed within the EU.
      Yet our Fourth Estate constantly refer to May’s victory in Phase of the talks.
      The Brit Nats and Scottish Better Together are barely keeping their heads above water, self delusion being the last resort of a deranged mind.

      This suits the Rees Moggs of the alt Right fascist wing of the Blue Tory English Nationalists.
      They will make a killing when England falls.

  12. m biyd says:

    Didn’t Gove falsely claim that his adoptive father’s fishing business went to the wall because of the EU’s fisheries policy. No wonder he got lamped a couple of times when he was at the P n Jm biyd

  13. The BritNats surely don’t actually believe this guff themselves, do they? It must be just fantasy dreamed up to keep the Plebs onside … eh? If a single one of them actually thinks this drivel is reality then he/she/they should ALL be carted off to the Funny Farm! Another excellent broadside, WGD. Keep them coming!

  14. Macart says:

    ‘Course the plain and demonstrable fact of the matter is that none of those attending this latest shindig truly believe in either unity or inclusion. Their parties and their own past records are a byword for exclusion, indeed some for outright hatred of other demographics. They believe only in a status quo which favours party or personal interest over care for a multi-national/cultural and multi-denominational population.

    Why should those alienated by Tories, Labour or DUP vote for their vision of government for these islands? Why would any EU resident in the UK vote for continued Tory government? A government that has betrayed their trust and even now is using their rights as a bargaining chip in a demented EU negotiation process. Why would they vote for Labour candidates equally hell bent on pursuing a catastrophically destructive Brexit? Why would those who have suffered ethnic or sectarian bigotry feel the least bit attracted to Tory/Lab/DUP version of unity and definition of Britishness?

    There is no stability, safety or socially just society to be found in Conservative Brexit UK. There is however, austerity ideology, societal, cultural, ethnic and religious alienation. There is an ever widening wealth gap. There are increasing levels of third world poverty and the promise of more yet to come. There is national and international isolation. Then there is the UKs ever tolerant mainstream media…. (cough)

    What’s not to like really? (other than all of it)

    All that Mr Gove and his fellow travellers can promise, is more of the same. And that for some considerable time to come.

    It doesn’t have to be like that. It doesn’t have to be this way now and we can choose differently.


  15. Tol says:


    “incorporating state”…and there it is, the truth of the matter. This is not a story of 2 nationalisms.

    An INCORPORATING STATE is not nationalist, its colonialist. Nationalism is about the self-determination and autonomy of a group. Colonialism is a usurping of other sovereign peoples to leach out some element of their wealth/resources into the colonial power…and the peoples are an annoying side.

    I always love your writing, but there are times where your points about 2 competing views of ‘nationalism’ fail to carry their full impact. The Unitied Kingdom is not a nation…its a disfuntiaional union.

    Can we please let the term the “British State” finally die for the weasel words it is.
    Britishness is an amazing Orwellian tool the English have managed to sell to the world…It hid their colonialism in the verbal slight of hand that it wasn’t them. AND it also meant that none of the colonised peoples ever gained full rights of the colonising power…they were never English and their rights could be taken away…Windrush anyone?.

    And while we are on this….Nationalism does not inherently mean excluding others. This is the politician’s fallacy…eg: cats have four legs; my dog has four legs; Therefore, my dog is a cat.
    Just because another country chooses an exclusory idea of nation does not mean all nations are the same. Scotland social openness as a nation has parallels to new-world migrant countries where in place of homogenous populations, the nation’s social compact was founded on the idea that if you participate you are part of the nation. It is an open, all encompassing idea of the nation.

    Don’t let them set the agenda, Scotland will need clear air to focus on the real issues this time round. The English state and Westminster are marshalling frightening tools that are an existential threat to Scotland’s sovereignty. That is the only arguments that matter this time.

    P.S. Don’t let the English and their desire to retain a tiny empire foist their insular idea of a nation on Scotland…

    • well argued, Tol.
      When a paid hack like, say, Brewer prefixes his interruption with ‘Don’t you think that’, it is shorthand for ‘The English Colonial Master decrees that..’
      They are literary prostitues selling English Establishment propaganda to, as appears to be the target audience of BBC Scotland, 61 year olds and above.
      ‘Don’t you think that the public just want politicians to get on with Brexit?’

      • Tol says:

        @Jack collatin

        Thanks for the kind words.

        There are 2 points in your comment.

        1. This deceptive verbal shorthand used by commentators is insidiously subtile in how it infers there is an already agreed position that they are asking you to agree with. And yes, all too often that position is a Westminster/English position. It also forces any alternate view into a negative and gives plausible deniability to the media’s inferred position.

        The public needs to wary when the 4th Estate becomes a propaganda arm to the powerful. They are the perfect wolf in sheep’s clothing. It is most dangerous when a much loved public broadcaster seamlessly transitions into a state broadcaster. Its power to distort is overwhelming while there remains a residual afterglow of public sentiment in sections of the community who have not noticed the change.

        2 – I like how you wrapped a different logical fallacy into your comment. That final point is a great example of the Fallacy of false equivalence. Just because a condition appears in one location. Eg. I want the government to “get on” and address/solve the Windrush scandal…does not necessitate that it transposes to all situations… i.e. the government should “just get on with Brexit”.

        This fallacy is used to deny that a (or any) logical case needs to be made for how Westminster responds to Brexit or prove that their choices about Brexit are beneficial for the country. It is a way of forcing debate onto semantics and deliberatly ignore the detail. It pulls the rug out from under the side with facts and drags both parties into the mud slinging where usually the mudslinger comes of looking best (because their not worried about factual, their trying to be emotive).

        • We are stumbling into the thick undergrowth of Eric Berne’s ‘Games People Play’ here, Tol.

          Take poor, tired, jaded, old Brewer for example.

          Last Sunday, Gordon Yes But interviewed the excellent Jeane Freeman to discuss the new Social Security powers, such as they are, which have been devolved to the Scottish Parliament.

          Once she had corrected him on the amount being allocated by WM to fund the scheme, £3.3 billion, not £2.7 billion, Freeman commented that one of her targets was to persuade the estimated half million Scots who had not claimed their entitlement to support to do so.

          Brewer immediately demanded that Freeman, on camera, right now !!! tell the scores of breathless 61 year olds watching to reveal which public services she would cut, how much Scottish tax would she increase, to pay for this unplanned largesse?

          If memory serves, it is classic ‘Yes But’ Berne:- ‘Now I’ve got you, you SOB.’

          Freeman, unflappable as always, dealt admirably with this hoary old Better Together taunt.

          Was Brewer really expecting Freeman to list areas of public expenditure which would be cut to pay for the potential as yet unknown increase in the Social Security budget off the cuff, ‘live’ (ish) on air?
          Was he expecting her to announce tax increases as an alternative to cuts?
          Of course not.

          His aim was to use his position as one of the key players in BBC Scotland’s Propaganda Team GB to undermine the Scottish Social Security Secretary’s launch of the devolved scheme at the get go.

          His silver haired audience was warned by him that services would be cut, taxes would go up, just to pay even more money to the ‘undeserving poor’.
          he SNP were going to cut public services, and raise income tax.
          You heard it first from Brewer on Sunday BBC, so it must be true.

          They all do it, Tol.

          ‘Yes but, how much is all this going to cost?’ is a classic Better Together Lord Darling, Willie Rennie, Kezia Dugdale, Mundo the Michty put down to smother any SNP Good story on any aspect of our Scottish Government’s legislative programme be it
          Education, Health, Policing, or redressing the Unionist PFI scandal.
          I urge all to record the ‘Yes Buts’, and ‘How much is all this going to cost’ interruptions from Glenn, Toodle Oo The Noo, and Jackie as Indyref 2 takes off.

          I’m Ok, and you are OK, Tol. and that’s what gets them. Hence the rushed reprise of Better Together 500 miles down the road.
          They are definitely not OK.

          • Tol says:

            @Jack collatin

            You raise the real issue for both YES and the SNP–their message is getting lost in a quagmire of fear and distraction.

            The only way to defeat that is to redefine the playing space. It requires a brutal honesty and clear vision of what is the core truth of the new YES argument. It is only then that YES points are weaponized to where they are able to cut down Westmister’s attacks.

            Sadly as YES is yet to muscle up (for fear of losing access), YES interviews always end either in frustration or just an inferred warm feeling…but the YES point always requires explanation…those ideas never become viral tweets…they die on the vine.

            YES needs to learn from the EU steadfastness in their Brexit negotiations. Always prioritise the core principals. Never even address the random details or minutia Westminster (and the BBC) throw out to bog you down.

            It is probably well past time for both YES and the SNP to stop being scared of losing access to media. They aren’t getting access already and the lack of real impact is not giving the support base enough to work with.

            • We go for the jugular, Tol.

              ‘Glenn, can you explain to me why you want to debate NHS waiting times when this is meant to be a platform to discuss Scotland’s right to Self Determination?’
              ‘But this is the question which a member of the audience wants answered, First Minister.’

              So you have assembled an audience loaded with parochial questions, presumably to smother the real debate, Scotland, Self Determination, within the EU, while England and Wales crash out of a market of 500,000,000 First World Customers.
              Your audience demands answers to the Pothole Crisis, the traffic queues as the Queensferry Crossing down to one lane for repairs?’

              ‘Glenn, you speak with Yoon tongue.’

  16. bringiton says:

    Rupert Murdoch’s bitch (sorry Man) in the Tory cabinet.

  17. Daz says:

    I wish we’d drop the “nationalism” bit about Scottish independence. There is nothing nationalist in the political sense of the word about Sco-Indy. I have found it to be very inclusive….Scotland not just for the Scots, but for everyone who calls her home. This word polarises opinion and puts off a great many people from joining the indy ranks……..a feature that Bitter Together and their media mouthpieces use to great effect.

    Perhaps a better moniker would be Nation-ism 😉 ………the movement to build the Scottish Nation.

    I prefer being labelled a “Self-determinist”, the right of a people to determine their own future.

    • Tol says:


      Could not agree more. As far as I can read, it is not a question of nationalism…Scotland is already a nation.

      The push to dissolve the union is about re-addressing the horrendous democratic deficit that neuters the people of Scotland and allows the Scottish people to have a meaningful say on their lives, and how they are governed.

      This is SELF DETERMINATION for a sovereign people…and even more importantly the protection of their sovereignty.

    • Well said, Daz! As one of those people who were not born Scottish but made Scotland my home, I agree with you wholeheartedly. I think “Self-determinist” IS the correct nomenclature but it’s a bit “clunky”, meaning that people will always go for the “quick & dirty” term ‘Nationalist’ in these days of the sound bite and the pithy slogan!

  18. Luigi says:

    Yep. I think we should start labelling these people exactly what they are: British Nationalists. Call them out on every occasion. They are not really unionists, so why do we give them this semi-respectable label? Unionism, well we all know what it is but the word itself sounds inclusive, together, when the opposite is the case.

    Nah. These characters are pure, undiluted 100% British Nationalists. Let’s deny them the comfort blanket of “unionists” and put them on the defensive from the word go:

    British Nationalists. 🙂

    • Tol says:


      Can you define what you mean by “British”?

      I suspect the use of this fluid term might be hiding an even more truthful + damning characterisation of the “Unionist” position.

      For example:
      ** Do you mean The UK, or the Island of Great Briton, or the landmass of England and Wales….Or is it your short hand for Westminster?
      ** Is the Briton as you define it actually a Nation?
      ** If it is not currently a nation…then how does it become one?

      If it is about absorbing another nation (Scotland) into a new single nation (dominated by England) then that term is colonialism.

      • Andy Anderson says:

        Agreed that many of us are totally confused with the various terms in use for all or part of these islands.

        The first people to use the name Britain were the Romans and their ‘Britannia’ at that time covered the southern part of England. Wales, northern England and Scotland were never called Britannia. Later as the Saxon, Jute and Norse migration started after about 450AD the peoples of these islands had a language group (variant of Welsh) that called themselves Britons, indeed some of these lived in the Glasgow area around 650/700AD.

        Never ever has there been a formal country called Britain apart for a time during the reign of James 1 (1603). There was a period after James the 6th of Scotland moved to become James 1st of ‘Britain’ with its Westminster Parliament that the concept of Britain did indeed exist, in theory.

        It is however in wide use. In my school days away back in the late 50’s and 60’s Britain was in serious use in history and geography as ‘our country’.

        It is agreed however that these are geographically the British Isles, a term referring to all of the UK islands and all of the island of Ireland.

        There are only two nations within the government of Westminster, namely England (without its own parliament) and Scotland. Wales and Northern Ireland are provinces within the UK. The only nation to include all of these is the UK with its parliament in London. Some people say Britain is the UK less Northern Ireland. No idea where this came from.

        Wales has never been a single sovereign nation in its history and Northern Ireland only exists as it was created by Winston Churchill in the 1920’s to boost numbers of supporters at Westminster.

        I think this confusion you highlight will always be here.

        • Tol says:

          @Andy Anderson

          “I think this confusion you highlight will always be here.”

          Only if we keep accepting it.

          If you are trying to promote that Scotland is a sovereign state that has the right to dissolve the union….then I suspect that the YES movement would benefit from relegating “British” to the dustbin and using precise/correct terms.

          Westminster knows if they get to set the default language they set the default decision. “English” language is not globally used because the English have a nice smile. Westminster’s long history of colonization has used defining the terms of discussion as one of its most insidious weapons. It’s like colonized populations referring to England as the “mother country”—not only does it falsely emotionalize the destructive relationship imposed via the gun, it infantilizes the colonised out of action…It is gaslighting of an epic scale.

  19. Tommy Boyle says:

    Hi buddy… Me, like 1.5 million others in our beautiful country really do appreciate the time and effort you put into this, it’s outstanding in my view! Thank you muchly. I’d like to ask though…I haven’t read much, if anything, on good reasoning why indeed, Scotland can’t just declare UDI?

    Get Outlook for Android


  20. chicmac says:

    ““incorporating state”…and there it is, the truth of the matter. This is not a story of 2 nationalisms. ”

    Well it is actually, but to qualify that, this is one of those semantic quirks which pervade the English language, like ‘public schools’ = ‘private schools’ or ‘flammable’ = ‘inflammable’.

    Bringlish Nationalism and Scottish Nationalism are both ‘nationalisms’ only in as much as part of the definition of ‘nationalism’ is ‘concern for the nation.’

    However, in regard to those two examples:

    One regards other cultures as being, de facto, inferior and therefore subject to ‘correction’, by force if necessary. Also, that ‘correction’ exercise is, of course, deserving of recompense-plus by dint of grabbing the errant culture’s resources.

    To them, different cultures are mere aberrations which are to be corrected and/or exploited but certainly not tolerated. This may well require invasion of the land exhibiting those abhorrent ideas in order to correct them. AKA imperialism.

    The other is fundamentally anti-imperialist in nature. Different national cultural perspectives are not simply tolerated but welcomed as a good thing for the advancement of civilization as a whole.
    This nationalism is only concerned with developing its own cultural perspective, evolving, yes, by accepting ideas from others which make sense to them, but seeking merely to ensure their cultural perspective is also heard. Certainly no expansionist designs.

    So the two ‘nationalisms’ are, in fact, actually virtual opposites, hence similar to the absurd contortions possible in the English language hitherto mentioned.

    I assume there is no need to point out which is which re Scottish Nationalism v Bringlish Nationalism.

    • Tol says:


      Cool observations.

      However, England can be both nationalistic (internal) and colonising (external). England’s internal idea of nation is not the same as its drive for resource conquest of imperialism. Westminster has used various forms of colonialism to maintain its control.

      For Scotland it gave all the appearance of democratic inclusion but always limited any real power. It could be argued that Scotland has been cast as a vassal state since 1706. Westminster never setup any level of government that balanced the sovereign parties and offers of federalism should be called out for the hot air they are (unless someone is going to dissolve the House of Lords and create an upper house that gives equal power to Scotland and England…goodluck to any English MP selling that to their electorate)

      The idea that the Union is “British” nationalism is to give the English a pass on its true intentions for their external actions. Scotland should always be wary of Westminster’s efforts to mask the reality by using shifting terminology via common parlance.

      Firstly, “British” is a term that YES should relegate to the dustbin. The vagaries of this homonym allow unionists to spawn a multitude of false arguments and straw-men. It has been said British is a term that allows England to impose Englishness on the other members of the UK without leaving fingerprints.

      If people are going to use “British Nationalism” I think they need to define “Briton”. If they mean the United Kingdom…then using the specificity shows the silliness of the term. I.e. if you say “United Kingdom nationalist”, most people would see the foolishness of the endeavour or recoil at the implications of such an act of assimilation.

      See how the rubbery word “British” allows people to accept notions that they wouldn’t if you were specific.

      • chicmac says:

        I am well aware of that subterfuge which is why I used the term ‘Bringlish’ rather than ‘British’.

        The irony, of course, being that the original term ‘Britons’ pertains to the various Celtic tribes which inhabited these islands when the Romans coined the term (possibly a Romanisation of an existing indigenous word). Any post Roman groups arriving, Vikings, French or English could therefore be considered usurpers of the word in some respects.

    • Yet still McWhirter suggests we suffer two years in Brexit Britain before Indyref 2 is triggered.
      No way. We go before the drawbridge is up and the portcullis down.
      England would strip Scotland bare if we were mug enough to stay in their corrupt union after March 2019.

      • Macart says:

        It’s a reasonable assumption by Mr McWhirter Jack, but I think it may be wrong. I suspect some fairly seismic events and necessity will dictate actions over the coming months.

        • My inbuilt seismometer predicts a world shattering earthquake, say 9, on the Richter scale, when the disastrous truth about Brexit and May’s Government’s Eurmageddon becomes clear, which can be no later than October 2018, according to the Article 50 timetable.
          I doubt that any of us, with certain knowledge of absolute disaster which awaits us from April 2019 (forget the 20 month Transition nonsense) will be content to hang about and suffer two years of Empire 2 misery before demanding Self Determination.
          I have never understood the view that ‘now is not the time’ until we run out of time, time when we are in control of holding the plebiscite.
          What part of the Withdrawal Bill Power Grab do the pundits not grasp?
          They are ignoring us now. Come April 2019, Scotland will be viewed as a colony.

          • Och, Sam I just caught FMQ. Better Together Mark II in full flow.

            Ruth Potholes Davidson berating the FM over the fall in Biology Highers.

            That Dick, The Scarf Leonard on NHS 12 week waiting time targets failing, James Kelly on hospices in ‘his constituency’ moving to East Kilbride, Jenny Marra on cuts to funding for swimming lessons for kids and her admiration for Maggie Thatcher’s education policy for Scotland, Annie Wells couldn’t even stumble through a reading of the fatuous question she was attempting, Young Mundell demanding that NS stop Edinburgh Woollen Mills morphing into Carlisle Woollen Mills, Iain Gray and Liz Smith on Swinney’s Education Reforms in two part Red and Blue Tory Harmony spouting pish bewcause the Labour shop stewards have infiltrated the Senior Teachers’ Union has, and Monica Lennon on…no it escapes me.

            It is clear that the Better Together Holyrood carpetbaggers’ job over the coming months is to drag Scotland down, Project Potholes, clogging up the Good Governance of Scotland with Wee Parish Council garbage, lest we the public actually see our Parliament tackle Brexit, the Power Grab, and engage in Big Grown Up politics of which Potholes Davidson and the Fat Falstaff faced Carlaw seem to find above their pay grade as they yet again laughed their fucking heads off, because it is a riot, this politics stuff.

            Toodle Oo The Noo’s ‘journalist chums’ were Rebecca McQullian, features editor at the Herald Britland and Ian MacWhirter ,who now thinks an independent Scotland would be a failure if we didn’t match the growth rate of China and America, and that the leaked ‘£4,100 better off’ figure from the Growth Commission report is just pie in the sky side of a bus conjecture.

            He equates it with the Boris’ bus and the £350 million a week for the English NHS post Brexit, an NHS which today the Institute for Fiscal Studies forecasts will require £2000 a
            year from every English Family by 2023 just to stand still.

            Yet again, Mac Whirter and Toodle Oo The Noo, who wondered if the swimming club he attended as a boy in Dundee, which it is clear didn’t commit him to a lifelong fitness regime, was still going, agreed that there wouldn’t be a Referendum any time soon, probably not for a couple of years …fade to grey.

            T O T Noo’s filmed insert with Ivan McKee and The Red Balloon Jackson Carlaw was the usual rabble drowning out any reasoned discussion on tomorrow’s Growth Report.
            Job Done. Taylor, strangled it at birth.
            Jackson Laff A Minute Carlaw seems to think that the report is being published deliberately over the Bank Holiday week end as this will will stop the Potholes Better Together Consortium from properly scrutinising its content.
            Aye, richt.
            What an absolute plonker this grinning guffawing ruddy faced ex car salesman, next leader of the Blue Tory Branch Office, is.

            It is clear that Leonard and Davidson, admirers of Margaret Thatcher’s Great Bellicose Free For All Britain are already meeting beforehand to ensure that our Government will get bogged down in councillor level questions like gurneys parked in hospital corridors or alleged torture of civil servants by that Nicola Sturgeon controlled Management teams.

            The Anglo Nats ProudScotsBut are shit scared and it shows.

            I urge all to catch today’s FMQ.

            In the history of Scottish politics there has never been such an abject bunch of failures on the Unionist bnenches. The Law of Diminishing Returns has reached the bottom of the Anglo Nats barrel.
            They are frighteningly abject.

            I am ready now, MacWhirter and Taylor, and so are millions of Scots.
            We are not hanging around until after the next Holyrood Election.

            Of course you both know that, but yet BBC Pacific Quay Anglo Nat Stockade cannot admit that come October, Brexshit will hit the fan big time, and then we move mountains.

    • Andy Anderson says:

      A good article.

  21. “Bigots for inclusivity”. There goes the coffee. Gove is the man who can lie for Britain. He does so continually. He is often wheeled out for TV interviews, because of his ease with lying to the British public. It would have to be a toss up as to who is the best pathological liar, between him and Boris. They only get away with lying on this scale, because of a compliant media.
    An SNP politician would be finished, if they ever thought of lying. Not only do they lie, but they tell one lie, then contradict themselves later with another lie. This is especially true with Brexit.
    Seems to me with Indyref2, that a No vote again, would be as much a disaster for Unionists as Yes voters. The No voters would suffer just as much as Yes voters in a Scotland who decides to vote No again. What is the point pragmatically, in voting No? As well as voting No to Independence, they would be voting to lose their EU citizenship. They would be voting for Scotland to become a backwater of a Pariah state. A Pariah state who would then be free, with our No vote, to treat us with contempt, plus, plus. They already treat us with the utmost disregard, just imagine what it would be like with another No vote.
    Our Parliament would be closed soon after the vote. Our NHS would be privatised almost immediately. Sold off to Trump’s USA, who are already slavering at the riches Brexit is going to provide for them. How does £40 per Gp visit sound? Think a trip to the dentist is expensive now, just wait on for USA prices. Access to a good education and University will be only for the relatively wealthy. Many more, will be on zero hour contracts and low pay with no prospect of improving themselves. There is no incentive or desire for England to help Scotland to improve. The opposite is the case. Scots are already disliked by many English people because of the recent negative propaganda from the English MSM. After Brexit with a No vote, the MSM won’t have the EU and immigration to blame for all the ills of England. Guess who will be the scapegoats again? That’s right, the sponging Jocks. All Unionists won’t be able to avoid the repercussions of their vote. They aren’t all middle class and wealthy.
    Labour with Corbyn are trailing the Tories even under the present disastrous circumstances. How on earth are the Labour party ever going to gain power again if they can’t do better against these corrupt, lying Tories? So Scotland is going to have these Tory psychopaths ruling us for the foreseeable future unless we gain Independence.
    We only need 6% extra this time, to avoid Armageddon

    • I have just noticed that Luigi would rather we use the term British Nationalists rather than Unionists. Although I have used the term Unionists above, I agree with him. Perhaps the term English Nationalists, also has its merits.

        • Tol says:

          @Jack collatin

          You are being too kind to the English/Unionists with “Anglo-Nats”. Don’t you think its actually more than that?

          The English psychosis is more than just a loss of empire, its a massive case of Gelotophobia (Fear of neighbours) where England can not comprehend the idea that they share the island with another country. Even worse would be the realisation that they are actually the smaller geographic component. Their clinging to the union is a desperate attempt to not reveal the reality that they are actually not an Island fortress…but just one of many countries on a small island.

          How many English do you think would be able to draw an accurate map of England (not the Island Great Briton)? Where as for the Scottish and Welsh this is an easy task.

          To the English, they dream of themselves as the Robinson Crusoe of Europe..the sole occupant of the island (ironically even in this story, Robinson never acknowledging there were other inhabitants…instead he kept his delusion of self-importance by de-humanising them as “natives” or “savages”).

          • To extend the Robinson Crusoe analogy to near breaking point is Scotland England’s Man Friday?

            • Tol says:

              @Jack collatin

              I came across this in researching Stockholm Syndrome and thought you might find this interesting: .

              The abusive relation ship actually reveals the psycollcial state of both victim and abuser.

              ….”The abuser is “morbidly insecure”. Actually having little sense of their own social value and seek to gain some semblance of value through domination and control.’…

              “Morbidly insecure”….now there is a new take on “Unionists”.

        • *Anglo-Nats* That covers it nicely, Jack!

    • Tol says:

      @Marlon McBrand (@jardtech)

      That list is terrifying and should make every Scot break out in a cold sweat. However, these are symptoms of a far greater risk to Scotland…its more than Brexit, or actions to dismantle the social-democratic framework…It is the potential loss of Scottish sovereignty that would allow Westminster to reek such a whirlwind of devastation.

      As such, the current push for dissolving the Union is not a re-run of Indyref—now it’s about SELF-PRESERVATION (will Scotland be able to keep its sovereignty at all?). The current existential threat to Scotland’s sovereignty is not Brexit, it is the immense powers Westminster is marshaling for itself in the guise of Brexit.


      It just looked like a small moon…. until the empire turned it on and it became the most dangers weapon in the universe.

      Sure…we all love a Star Wars reference….but in reality it is one of the great parables of power secretly working to decimate any resistance.

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