Trapped between vampires and a flapping plastic bag

It was St Andrew’s Day last week. According to East European tradition, vampires are most active around the time of St Andrew’s Day, and there was indeed a confirmed sighting of one in a leather factory near Bridge of Weir just before St Andrew’s Day. Although only very briefly.

Not to be out-done, this week the Labour party has sent someone up from London in its own attempt to suck the lifeblood out of the independence movement. This time it’s shadow chancellor John McDonnell, who is promising that if Scotland votes Labour and there’s a Labour government, then we’ll be rewarded in the shape of tons of money and a shedload of new powers for Holyrood. Here’s a lovely photo of some unspecific jam you could possibly have at some unspecified time in the future. Because we’ve never heard that sort of thing from Labour in opposition before. Oh no.

John assured us that all the SNP has done in Holyrood has been to pass on Tory austerity, conveniently forgetting to mention that the Labour party fought tooth and nail to prevent Holyrood getting substantive powers over tax and welfare, even the Tories were in favour of devolving more power to Holyrood in the Smith Commission. And now here he is, promising extra jam. Or more precisely, suggesting the prospect of the possibility that there could perhaps be some extra jam. This is what counts as a promise from the Labour party.

John also said that a Labour government would consider proposals on a new indy referendum, which isn’t quite what the Labour in Scotland branch manager has been saying. Richard Leonard is quite insistent that a Labour government would categorically refuse to consider another Scottish independence referendum. Sadly for Richard, vampires lure their victims with their glamour and charisma. Unfortunately he possesses all the charisma of a discarded plastic bag flapping uselessly in the branches of a tree, so no one pays him much attention. His sole notable quality is that he could manage to make James Kelly seem like the life and soul of the party.

They contradict themselves on Brexit, and no one really knows what their true position is, and they contradict themselves on Scotland and no one really knows what their true position is. So let no one say that there is no consistency in the Labour party.

Of course Labour’s lack of consistency and its inability to develop coherent policies is only an issue if it’s going to be the party of government any time soon. We are faced with the most incompetent, useless, evil and vile, morally bankrupt, and chaotic Conservative administration in living memory, and yet Labour still can’t get a decent lead over them in opinion polls. Jeremy Corbyn’s fans claim that this is because the media is vile and out to get him, and this would be true. But as a supporter of Scottish independence all I can say is, welcome to my world. The right wing media in this country is part of the political landscape we have to deal with.

The chances are that if there is the early general election that Labour is so keen on, they’d only lose it and England would vote Tory again. It would solve absolutely nothing. The message for Scotland is don’t rely on the Labour party to save you from the Tories, and don’t rely on the Labour party to deliver what you hope they’ve promised you, because they’ve promised the opposite to someone else.

Meanwhile Priti Patel, the Conservative MP for the Irish Famine, has called on the government to use the threat of food shortages in Ireland in order to browbeat the Irish government into a position that’s more amenable to Tory Brexiteers. If you wanted an illustration of the moral bankruptcy of the Conservative party, you couldn’t do much better than that. Here’s an English MP threatening Ireland with food shortages if England doesn’t get its way. She’s either ignorant of, or more likely doesn’t care about, the history of the Irish famine, when Britain’s economic and political interests were instrumental in compounding the disaster of potato blight. Then that same British government sat and did nothing while millions of Irish people died or were forced into emigration. The population of Ireland has never recovered. Now senior Conservatives are actually suggesting to threaten Ireland with starvation in order to pursue their insane dream of Empire 2.0. Labour promises jam, but the Conservatives actually deliver. It’s just a shame that they only deliver bile.

These are the same Brexiteer muppets who have also suggested that one way that the UK’s Irish backstop problem can be solved would be for Ireland to return to UK rule. And if that doesn’t tell you how deluded they are, nothing will. They fancy themselves as the big beasts of British politics, but if they really were big beasts, the zookeepers would be shooting at them with tranquilliser darts.

On Friday, the Scottish government revealed that the Conservatives are blocking the Scottish government’s proposals to pay the £65 Brexit Tax that the Tories are imposing on EU citizens. The Scottish government had announced its wish to pay the so called “settled status fee” for EU citizens working in Scottish public services. Around 13,000 EU citizens work in the NHS and social care in Scotland. However the UK government has said that “third parties” will not be allowed to pay the fees, meaning that EU citizens in Scotland will have to find the money themselves. The Scottish government had offered to pay the fee as a gesture to EU citizens in Scotland in an attempt to staunch the loss of much needed EU citizens from public service jobs. There’s already been a drop in applications for nursing jobs from EU applicants. There’s not much that the Scottish government can do to ameliorate the UK’s “hostile environment”, so paying the extra fee that EU citizens would incur because of Brexit was never much more than a gesture of goodwill. The Conservatives aren’t even allowing that. They’re not just the nasty party, they’re the petty and nasty party.

As long as Scotland remains a part of this dysfunctional state, we’ll be trapped. Trapped between vampires and a flapping plastic bag. It doesn’t have to be like this. There’s another option, a Scottish option.

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43 comments on “Trapped between vampires and a flapping plastic bag

  1. […] Wee Ginger Dug Trapped between vampires and a flapping plastic bag It was St Andrew’s Day last week. According to East European tradition, vampires are […]

  2. Excellent, Paul.
    This is the end, my friend.

  3. bedelsten says:

    JOHN McDONNELL (Labour, shadow chancellor) vows to give Scotland its “biggest transfer in wealth and power” from London since the second world war.

    McDonnell said Labour would bring an end to austerity with an additional £70 billion of cash for Scotland over 10 years.

    John McDonnell has vowed to deliver a £70 billion package for Scots as he bids to establish an irreversible shift in wealth and power away from London.

    Fool us once, shame on you. Fool us twice, shame on us. Does he think we have zips up the backs of our heads, have no memories of previously broken vows, we are that gullible?

    • James Mills says:

      In fairness to McDonnell , the only Scots he deals with are those in ”Scottish Labour ” ( sic ) so he does think we zip up the back – look closely at James Kelly !

    • Independence would bring much more wealth to Scotland.

    • Liz g says:

      Biggest transfer of wealth…
      Eh.. naw…
      How about we just keep all the wealth right here in Scotland.
      We don’t want the wealth of another country, England can keep what she has.
      Jist oor ain wealth will do nicely

  4. steelewires says:

    I wish the First Minister and Scottish politicians would give up trying the save the UK from Brexit. Brexit’s and English Nationalist project. I read that the percentage of those voting for it has risen. Let the English Nationalists, and the English Nationalist parties in Scotland, Tory, Labour, and Lib-Dem, have their Brexit. Let Scots work for Scottish independence!

    • Graeme says:

      Yup, you only have to glance at the guff in the Express and Mail to see what they are lapping up. The Express in particular. For some unknown reason my parents, both of who were SNP voters in the past have now taken to the Express in their retirement and they believe what they read. Nothing I say will change their minds, they just give me that withering look that only parents can give their children when I point out the reality to them. It really is enough to make you greet.

  5. wullie says:

    JOHN McDONNELL (Labour, shadow chancellor)
    Just return the £3 trilion you have nicked from our North Sea that will do for starters. Go on, show the world that you can stand on your own 2 feet without stealing resources whether natural or human from other parts of the planet. Bet your to feart

    • This sad wee man actually believes that he holds power and authority over us Scots, and can ‘declare’ that,as our Imperial Master he will arrange for the ‘biggest transfer of wealth and power’ ever to be bestowed on his Northern Colony when we vote to put him in that position of power to do so.
      The sheer fucking arrogance of this Little Englander elitist shit enrages me beyond description.

      It’s Scotland’s wealth, oil, trees, grouse moors, cattle sheep, fish, minerals, shores, lochs (sorry ‘locks’) valleys and institutions.
      Your days of hovering up our money and ‘giving’ us some back are over.
      The game is up.
      We no longer wait and hope that McDonnell and 650 English MPs maydeign to ‘grant’ us anything anymore.
      Your crooked Union is finished.
      We are taking our country back by any means at our disposal.
      We are asking your permission for nothing.

      I am done listening to this or that English blawhard telling me what he or she will allow us to do.
      The Union is dead.
      If those Up Here who wish to remain subjugated by their near neighbour, why don’t you pack up and head back to your green and pleasant land?
      I’ve had it up to here with them, and their Fourth Estate Fifth Column of erselickin collaborators.
      It has got very real indeed, Gary Robertson.

  6. No thanks, John. We’ve bought apples fae yir cart afore.

  7. robert harrison says:

    Frist it was those born from commonwealth country’s now it’s the Europeans typical England supremists and there hatred towards forigen nationals sooner we are out of the uk union no more English politicians sabotaging us every chance they get.

  8. stewartb says:

    John McDonnell’s new vow for a whole lot more powers for Holyrood does raise some ‘interesting’ issues. I’m sure we all remember the promises of Gordon ‘nearest thing to federalism’ Brown in 2014.

    So is McDonnell acknowledging that promises to Scotland were not kept? Or is he suggesting the promises have been kept but despite Scotland already having the nearest thing possible to federalism he is now miraculously offering ways to get us even closer still (to something)?

    Labour’s ‘asymptotic illusion’!

    (For the non-mathematical, an asymptote is a line that gets closer and closer and closer to a curve as the distance gets closer and closer to infinity – but the line never actually touches the curve except, we presume, at infinity.)

  9. bringiton says:

    England is a Tory country and Labour know that in order to get elected to power in Westminster,they have to appeal to English Tory voters.
    Their trick is to try and hide that from Labour voters in Scotland by pretending that they will implement social democratic policies once elected to power.
    Two Separate polities require two Separate governments in a democracy.
    People in Scotland don’t live in a democratic country,at least for now and England always gets the Tory government it wants,well at least for the vast amount of time.
    Scotland always gets the Tory government England votes for.

    • Welsh Sion says:

      bringiton @ 8.29pm

      England always gets the Tory government it wants, well at least for the vast amount of time.

      Au contraire, mon brave:

      England always gets the Tory government it wants, well at least for the vast amount of time. And when it doesn’t … it gets Red Tories!

      And poor, wee Wales gets ignored in the corner. Arise, Cymru and speak with a louder voice, for pity’s sake!

      Yours, aye.

  10. awkwardboy says:

    Witches knickers, plastic bags caught in branches flapping in the wind are called witches knickers or so I’m told.

    • sog says:

      Have you noticed that the smaller witches tend to wear white, or pale blue abroad, the larger ones normally wear black.

    • Artyhetty says:

      And the point is? Go have a read about the witch trials, those who were murdered at the hands of the state run religious nut jobs.

      I cannot abide jokes or silly references to what was a genocide of mainly women, and for what? To spread fear, to keep people terrified, keep them divided, suspicious even of each other, and, to take their money for the church. Also to make sure that women could no longer be midwives, and health practitioners, which worked for the poor. Utter disgrace.

      • selkie says:

        Quite right Artyhetty, and now, witch hunt can have more connotations now, chasing innocent, vulnerable and “other” people.

  11. Macart says:

    Oh, and that Scottish option? That’d be our population. You don’t need anyone’s permission. Not the Conservatives. Not Labour and not that other lot. Though why anyone would consider asking them… ANYTHING.

    The population of Scotland, the people, are the sovereign power. Not parliament and not the crown. YOU.

    John McDonnell’s offer? Is utter horseshit. Those powers are yours whenever you want them. As is the cash by the by. In short? He’s offering Scotland’s population their own property and on that basis I’m sure he knows where the door is and which direction the border is in thereafter.

    One other myth to bust before hitting the hotel bar. There is no leaving the union. There is no secession. There is no separate. There is only dissolution. When (YES WHEN) we dissolve the treaty of union? the UK ceases to exist as an entity.

    Worth a thought.

    • John McDonnell, who are you?
      Imagine if I promised England oodles of stuff because as a Scot, subjugating the English, I could.
      You call yourself a Socialist, but you speak like an British Imperialist.
      Scotland is not an English Colony.
      Stop telling us what you would ‘allow’ us.
      You are leaving Europe : we are not.
      Bye precious Union.


  13. susan says:

    Scathing post Paul – I like it! And good btl comments too. Jack hits the nail on the head with his “British Imperialist” comments. “Allow us” indeed.

  14. Rhisiart Gwilym says:

    Paul, you missed a small rhetor’s trick in this piece. Where you write: “The Conservatives aren’t even allowing that. They’re not just the nasty party, they’re the petty and nasty party” Please consider adding on: “; the pritti party, in fact.” Skewer that foul NikkiHaley-style creature Patel every way you can. Asian-diaspora clones of Katie Hopkins, both of them.

  15. Has anyone alerted the Irish people that they have been threatened with starvation by a Tory MP? This woman is totally ignorant and is being paid a whacking great salary by – um, you and me. My jaw was on the floor when I read her remarks.

    • I W, this woman has form; she had to resign from her Gravy Train Job as International Development Minister when it came out that her secret’ family holiday’ to Israel was organised by some Lord whose name will escape me until I draw my last breath, but who is chair of the Conservative Friends of Israel (what the fuck is this fascination by Red and Blue Tories to join a wee club calling itself ‘The Friends of Israel’? I think I know why, but I do not wish to invoke the wrath of you know who by stating it in a public forum.).
      The visit was clearly political; she even managed to visit a field hospital in the occupied Golan Heights.
      A nasty wee piece of work, if you ask me.
      This is how they would view Independent Scotland.
      Threaten us with the might of England’s fury.
      Indeed Project Fear One was littered with threats of violence, and social, economic, and trade harm, if we voted YES.
      I’ll take no more pronouncements from English Politicians on what is good for me, or else.
      England, your tea is up.

  16. Artyhetty says:

    Red Tories, the Labour UK branch in Scotland, have absolutely no intention of improving anything whatsoever for Scotland. Their ploy is to try conning enough people in Scotland to vote for them. There are a lot of people coming to live in Scotland right now, many from England, who do not see just what Labour stands for in Scotland.

    They don’t know that Labour London UK branch sent £1.5 BILLION BACK to the London WM government when in power at Holyrood, saying, ‘nothing to spend it on in Scotland’. That alone is utterly criminal, even apart from their disgusting PFI scheme leaving Scottish councils in £Billions of ‘debt’ to private companies for many years to come!

    Labour London based UK branch in Scotland do not and in fact have never, worked in the interests of Scotland, or Scotland’s people. They intend on running Scotland in their own way if they can get away with it.

    That would be REMOVING vital services, running the SNHS into the ground then privatising it, pairing up with their best pals the Blue Tories, keeping Scotland poor and begging, and all the while, continuing to remove Scotland’s incredibly lucrative resources and revenues for a very long time to come.

    Ten years is nowhere near enough for Scotland to repair 300+ of British nationalist rule, the damage has been very extensive. The repair works have started, via the SNP, but to go back to papering over the cracks, with some torn up newsheets, is just not an option. It would ruin Scotland completely.

    I think Scotland has given the UK it’s best shot, by a long chalk, time to take back control Scotland!

  17. Les Bremner says:

    A friend of mine emigrated from Ireland to Canada in 1968. Here is is his considered opinion on the state of Brexit in particular and the English in general.

    The British would have done so much better if they had taken up Donald Trump’s offer to negotiate Brexit for them. For some reason, they did not, preferring to dig an endless hole all by themselves. Much as we don’t like to say it, we must reluctantly face the fact that the English are not ready for self rule. It’s not their fault. The Normans gave them independence far too soon.

  18. markrussell20085017 says:

    Just watching Fluffy on BBC Politics. No wonder the country is fucked. Shameful.

    • What lies on the bed of the ocean and quivers? A nervous wreck…and David Mundell.

      This unprincipled talentless little man quivered his way through yet another Brewer light grilling, quite content to admit that he has no principles other than holding on to his pointless little sinecure for as long as possible no matter how much of a public embarrassment he makes of himself.
      Anne McGuire and Robin Dimwoodie (nice little earner) got to summarise for Brewer at the close of yet another pointless half hour of lightweight politics for 65 year old dogwhistlers.

      Of course NS and the Scottish Government have had a ‘Norway style’ solution to this Brexshit on the table since December 2016, but David Davis, who reportedly spent FOUR HOURS meeting the EU 27 in two years before he headed for the hills and It Wisnae Me, Gove, A Big Boy Did It aAd Ran Away obscurity, binned it out of hand with one side of an A4 rebuke.
      Brewer knows this but chooses selective amnesia rather than admitting that the SNP have proposed a solution all along. SNP GOOD? Arghh!
      Mundell knows that an Independence vote is now inevitable, hence his U Turn on throwing Norn Irn to the wolves.

      Will the last person to leave BBC Pacific Quay Stockade please turn out the lights.
      What a misnomer..BBC Scotland.

      • Oh, yes, nearly forgot..Paul Sweeney who promised us 13 frigates if we voted No, none if we voted Yes, was on too. He is alarmingly dim. He wants a GE on a platform of Brexit on Corbyn’s impossible Six Tests, you know the ones that that Dick Leonard could not rhyme off, or a Second Referendum with Corbyn’s Commies campaigning to stay in the EU.
        As they say, you couldn’t make up such incredible stupidity.

        Never in the field of human conflict…

  19. Macart says:

    Oh, THIS is brilliant.


    • And so it begins, Sam.
      Willie Rennie doesn’t care about schools, Health, Welfare, or even the mental health of children.
      He has pulled out of budget talks because the BAD SNP will not ‘suspend’ their goal of Self Determination.
      So no Yellow Tory input in departmental budget allocations in any shape or form.
      Wee Willie should take his Union Jack and stick it up a place where the sun don’t shine. This latest ‘Do ‘Nothing/Take The Wages’ is proof if proof were needed that he is a bought and paid for wee Brit Nat puppet.
      we’ve not heard from his Back Four, Mumbles Bumbles Rumbles and Crumbles for a while.
      What a waste of five wage packets this little canker on the bum of Scottish Democracy is.

      Nudging towards 60% pro Self Determination, without a campaign.


      • Macart says:

        Not entirely sure Rennie thought his argument through, but then I’m not sure whether his entire party is capable of joined up thinking.

        His argument effectively boils down to – ‘I want you to give up your constitutional aims in favour of my constitutional aims, or I’ll skweam and skweam until I’m etc’. Blackmail and hypocrisy isn’t a good look tbh. The difference between Mr Rennie, his Libdems and the Tories is what precisely at this point? Rhetorical question really. I think we all know the answer to that one.

  20. Macart says:

    Mmmm. Given today’s poll results? We’re getting there. 🙂

    Yes, yes. I know! Why aren’t we much further forward? Are people really that daft? What’s it going to take etc. etc.

    It has to be remembered what we’re up against. The power it still wields even in its currently weakened and fractious state. The media saturation and control it still enjoys. It’s still a monster with three hundred years of massaged propaganda behind it.

    Yet despite ALL of its advantages we’re gaining day by day. Despite the naked intimidation. Despite the fear mongering. Despite the overt displays of ignorance, arrogance and condescension. Despite ALL of that? We’re at worst, on an even footing. The powers that be have something to worry about.

    Smile people. Seems to me that today is a good day. 🙂

  21. Jason Smoothpiece says:

    Loved it that Labour offered us another VOW.

    They clearly think we are stupid how did the last VOW work out just prior to the independence referendum of course it did not happen. The regime just went about their business ignoring the dafties in Scotland.

    They then have the complete disrespect to try it on again.

    Labour what a shower of a*******s.

    They cannot be accurately described as anything else.

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