Bringing Theresa May down to earth

Tomorrow, Monday, there’s a vote in the House of Commons on the expansion of Heathrow airport. Until recently the measure was going to be backed by the SNP because even though it’s a Conservative government measure, it was going to come with promises attached that should the SNP vote in favour, then Heathrow Airport Ltd and the UK government would back certain vague and unsubstantiated measures to support Prestwick airport and other equally vague economic gains for Scotland. The press was certain that the SNP was going to back the measure, that Heathrow airport expansion would be passed by Westminster, and Theresa May’s minority government could chalk up another victory.

Aviation is a reserved issue, which is why the SNP can vote on the expansion of an airport in England. Flights to Heathrow have consequences for Scotland, not the least of which is that Heathrow is a major aviation hub for Scotland. It might be better for Scotland to develop its own aviation hubs, but that’s a matter for after independence. As part of the UK Scotland is going to have to rely on Heathrow. However the exansion plans did come with a promise that, amongst other things, Prestwick would be used as a logistics hub during the construction work. We’re told that there would be lower landing charges for planes flying from Scotland and there would be more flights from Scottish airports to Heathrow. There are promises that the expansion of Heathrow and the building of a third runway would lead to the creation of 16,000 jobs in Scotland. However there’s a remarkable lack of detail on how that would happen.

However the agreement with the SNP was reached several years ago, back in a distant age when the British government could still lay claim to a fig leaf of honesty and honourability, or at least when it was still pretending that it could. That fig leaf was stripped off and doused with paraquat during the EU Exit Bill debate when the British government revealed that it regards Scotland with contempt. It revealed the ugly truth. There is no respect. There is no equality. There is nothing but contempt and disdain and the dead and shrivelled claim of the British government to represent all parts of the UK equally.

So bugger Heathrow for a gemme o sodgies. The behaviour of the British government over the far more important issue of Brexit and their shameful betrayal of the devolution settlement means that no Scottish MP should back any measures brought in by Theresa May. No Scottish MP should cooperate in any shape or form with anything that allows Theresa May and her bunch of constitutional vandals to crow about any victory whatsoever. The SNP should tell Theresa, you’ll have had yer Heathrow expansion. You can’t do deals with people who can’t be trusted, and the only thing that Scotland can trust in Theresa May’s government is the knowledge that it can’t be trusted.

After the barefaced lies told by representatives of the British government during the EU Exit bill debates, after the way in which they have reneged on their promises to Scotland, after the way in which all the promises and commitments made to the people of Scotland by the anti-independence parties have been broken, exactly how can we trust anything that they tell us at all? Vague promises of unsubstantiated economic advantages for Scotland should the SNP support Heathrow expansion are not enough. Even a written promise signed in blood would not be enough. The British government has proven that it does not see itself as being bound by any promise that it makes to Scotland or to the people of Scotland, no matter how solemnly it is vowed.

Why should Scotland believe in the promises of the British government that if the SNP backs Heathrow expansion then the British government will help to ensure that there are some vague and unspecified economic advantages for Scotland in the deal? We remember that they promised us that if Scotland voted no in 2014 there would be massive investment in the Scottish renewable energy industry. That didn’t happen, and now renewable energy companies are taking the expertise they’ve developed in Scotland abroad. We remember that we were told that jobs in Scotland would be safe if Scotland voted against independence, yet those jobs are at risk now with Brexit.

Time after time after time, the British government has demonstrated that once it has secured whatever it was seeking to secure, then it no longer feels any need to fulfil the promises it made in order to secure it. This isn’t a one off lapse. This hasn’t even happened on a mere handful of occasions. It happens time after time. The betrayal of a Westminster promise to Scotland is the norm, not the exception. Why should the promises made to Scotland in order to secure the support of Scottish MPs for Heathrow expansion be any different? All the more so since the promises made to Scotland about Heathrow are vague and uncertain.

Over this weekend, there are hints in the press that the SNP is getting cold on the idea of supporting Heathrow expansion. There is not enough detail about how benefits to Scotland would be delivered. That’s code for the British government giving itself a get out clause the width of the space between Ross Thomson’s ears. We have that infamous Vow as the classic example of what happens when Scotland allows itself to be persuaded by vague and uncertain promises made by Westminster.

It’s not just Scotland that the British government is lying to about Heathrow. The claim that Heathrow expansion can be delivered within the UK’s international carbon reduction commitments looks highly unlikely. And let us not forget that the same government which is claiming to deliver a third runway within its environmental and carbon reduction commitments has recently proven itself to be unwilling to develop and invest in Scotland’s renewable energy industries.

You don’t do deals with liars. The only thing you can do is to demonstrate to them that there are consequences, and one of those consequences is to cease to cooperate with them. The SNP should not just refuse to support the bill allowing expansion of Heathrow to go ahead, it should actively oppose. Scotland should not be in the business of facilitating any victories for Theresa May and her band of constitutional vandals. The SNP should bring them down to earth.

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24 comments on “Bringing Theresa May down to earth

  1. Cubby says:

    It was nice to see the dug in real life at Bannockburn. Yes it is more of a medium sized dug. Great new logo. Love to see it on a mug. Made do with a wings mug but really wanted a wee ginger dug mug.

  2. davidmccann24 says:

    No way, Teresa May!
    Trust is a two way process, and I wouldn’t trust May with my cat!

  3. Iain says:

    Totally agree. Nobody in their right mind does deals with liars and pimps. If SNP MPs do not vote against UK Govt they will make bigger fools of themselves than Ross Thomson.

  4. john 59 says:

    The SNP in Westminster should on a daily basis thwart and strangle if possible appropriate bills , they have tried to conform to procedure but this has proven fruitless. It should now be Parliamentary War ( figure of speech and no violence )

  5. Andy Anderson says:

    100% agree with you Paul. Also with John59 above. We should block everything that does not definately help Scotland. Let’s be intransigent.

  6. […] Wee Ginger Dug Bringing Theresa May down to earth Tomorrow, Monday, there’s a vote in the House of Commons on the expansion of […]

  7. There is talk of the SNP abstaining. This is what the SNP used to do in the days before EVEL on issues which had no impact on Scotland, but did so on England. The SNP MPs would scrutinise new Bills for anything which could affect Scotland, and if there was nothing therein, would absent themselves from the vote. A gentleman/woman’s agreement.

    Then we had the audacity to have an Independence referendum. They promised us the Earth if we voted No. And when we did they shafted us left, right, centre and sideways.

    The events of the last couple of weeks should not have come as a shock, for those on the YES side have predicted them since that Referendum. There will be no perks for Scotland for voting for Heathrow’s third runway. Anyone who is stupid enough to believe there will be does not, I hope, hold a seat in Westminster for an SNP constituency.

    There are alternatives to Heathrow for Scotland right now – Schiphol is an amazing and modern terminal with a railway, shopping centre and other attractions and offers access to Schengen and non-Schengen destinations. Dublin airport offers the opportunity to clear US customs so that passengers can step off the plane as domestic arrivals and go straight to their business or pleasure destination. We should be thinking about what we need as an Independent Scotland, not as a “part of the UK”.

    If SNP vote against the tories, they will also be sending a message about Climate Change because it is highly unlikely the UK Government will be able to meet it’s targets if a third runway goes ahead. Scotland of course, is a leader in renewable energy and climate change target achievement. Think how pleased Patrick Harvie will be.

    Finally, given the way we have been treated in the past fortnight, since the EU Referendum, since 2014, and for the past 300-plus years why oh why would any right minded SNP MP think it a good idea to vote with this racist, bigoted, disgusting Conservative government for ANYTHING ?

    They have drawn the lines – we should now cross them

    • grumpydubai says:

      Well said. We should be acting and making decisions as if we are an Independent Country, in order that we are better placed when we become Independent.

    • angusskye says:

      I have little additional to say as you have said it all, MM. Let’s look to a future, with a closer relationship with Europe than with the south of England.

      It does strike me that the need for a third runway at Heathrow lessens with each day as Brexit approaches. Little England’s desire for isolation will lead to a reduction in business for Heathrow, not an increase.

  8. Cubby says:

    We have to start from the premise that they will not honour any promise or agreement. If we agree anything it has to be legally binding with extremely punishing penalty clauses for non delivery. And I mean extremely punishing penalty clauses. This applies to now, during negotiations for independence and after independence. As I have said many times they are not English gentlemen. That is a myth perpetrated by the British empire for its own selfish reasons.

  9. DAVID HIND says:

    Remember years ago being told by Jim Fairlie that Dutch airlines wanted to invest in Prestwick and make it an international hub airport and asked westminster to contribute.Westminster said they would only subside a hub airport around London.Dutch airlines said if no financial help in uk then they would go elsewhwere.Of you trot says westminster.The airlines then created schipol.Cannot find any supporting links to this story and wonder if anyone hear has any.

  10. Cathy says:

    Let’s hope our SNP MP’s vote against this rather than abstaining and certainly not supporting it…..give Westminster a message!

  11. Marconatrix says:

    Time the gloves came off. Simple as that. We got poked in the eye, so no more playing nice. Sadly force is the only language the Tories understand.

  12. Davos says:

    Much though I love your apt comparison of “the space Between Ross Thomson’s ears” to ‘a vacuum’, it’s a pity we have to mention this cratur at all. We have plenty opportunity to watch his regular Commons pratt-fall double acts with his Toryboy chum Douglas Ross of Moray.

  13. Hear! Hear! I sincerely hope that the SNP will vote against the Heathrow Expansion … on principle. As Marconatrix has said “Time the gloves came off …”

  14. Stuart Mcnicoll says:

    Perhaps the SNP benches should be empty during the debate, take no part other than to troupe in at the vote, and vote against.

  15. wm says:

    I learned over fifty years ago never to trust tory promises. Let us with our lesser minds try and work out what they (the tories) are up to, I see this as an investment to enhance London and the south of England’s economy, nothing else matters, for instance half the flights that currently fly from Scotlands airports will be undercut by Heathrow forcing them to fly to Heathrow to pick up scottish passengers who will have to fly from Scotland, this means added travel and expense for the people of Scotland but who cares.Not being as clever as Ruth or Boris, I do not knowe if my thoughts are sensible or just plain stupid.

  16. xaracen says:

    Time to start throwing the crockery at the crockerati!

  17. AYe, Gloves off ! Troop in at last gasp and vote Against it ! Don’t Abstain

  18. smp6v says:

    Disagree with this sentence in article: “The British government has proven that it does not see itself as being bound by any promise that it makes to Scotland…”
    “Scotland” should be replaced by “anyone”.

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