They ain’t seen nothing yet

On the weekend of the SNP party conference, The Times newspaper published a poll commissioned from YouGov which shows that even before an official campaign for independence has begun, while we’ve been subjected to a constant barrage of SNPbaddery in the overwhelmingly anti independence media, support for independence continues to rise. When you remove the 10% who don’t know, 49% of the Scottish electorate want independence, 51% are opposed. There’s a 3% margin of error in opinion polls and this result is within that margin, so support for independence is now statistically tied with opposition.

I don’t know if the poll questioned 16 and 17 year olds, who aren’t able to vote in UK elections or European elections but who will be able to vote in a Scottish referendum. If it didn’t then the true support for independence could be even higher.

The poll also confirmed what Scotland in Union’s shooting itself in the foot poll earlier this week showed, that the SNP are set to dominate Scottish elections and will make substantial advances on their current position. It is possible, albeit unlikely, that the SNP could hoover up four of Scotland’s six seats in the European Parliament. The new poll also shows that pro-independence parties are set to increase their showing in the next Scottish Parliamentary elections, and we will end up with an even larger pro-independence majority in Holyrood. Other polls have shown that if there is a snap UK General Election, the SNP is likely to make huge gains at the expense of Labour and the Conservatives. They could pick up as many as 16 seats in Westminster. So much for peak SNP, so much for people being fed up with talk of independence.

Some might say that even though British politics are in a state of near collapse, that we have a British government notable only for its venal ineptidude which is consuming itself with its short term party interests while the future of the UK more uncertain that it has ever been in the post WW2 era, that it’s shocking that support for independence isn’t even higher.

At this juncture I’d comment on the SNP party conference which is taking place in Edinburgh this weekend, but the broadcast media has decided that the conference of the largest political party by far in Scotland isn’t worthy of live coverage. It isn’t being shown live anywhere on that broadcast media that’s so keen to give us wall to wall coverage of the Tory or Labour conferences, constant Brexit vox-pops from leave voting areas, and Nigel bloody Farage. Yet again, the new BBC Scotland channel was put to the political test, and yet again it has failed. On Saturday afternoon it was showing the snooker instead, a snooker contest which is also being broadcast on BBC2. If the BBC thinks snooker is more important than the political future of Scotland, the only thing that’s being snookered is the BBC’s reputation.

One of the biggest reasons why support for independence isn’t higher is because the media in this country sees its role as speaking truth unto power. It’s just that the truth they want to speak is what the British establishment says it is, and the power that they want to speak it unto is the sovereignty of the people of Scotland. They don’t want to ask the British government why it thinks it has the right to deny Scotland a say on its own future even though the Scottish government has a mandate for a referendum. They don’t ask the British government why it can point to its own interpretation of opinion polling to claim that there shouldn’t be a Scottish independence referendum while at the same time ignoring all the opinion polling that shows that most people in the UK want a referendum on the EU. Nowhere will Scotland’s overwhelmingly anti-independence media hold the British government to account for its double standards.

If you want an explanation as to why support for independence isn’t higher, there you have it right there. Even though half the population of Scotland support independence, we still struggle to get our message across via a media that’s hell bent on silencing us when it’s not trying to defame us as anti-English racists or searching desperately for another SNPbad story.

It’s a media which is determined to depict independence as a purely party political issue, and believes that if it can scream about some perceived shortcoming in an issue which is within the remit of a devolved administration headed by the SNP, then that throws the entire question of independence into doubt. It ignores what ought to be an obvious and self-evident truth, that an independent Scotland will be a democracy, and other political parties will be available. It ignores the fact that even though the SNP is by far the biggest and most influential political party pressing for independence, the grassroots movement comprises people of all parties and of none.

It is then a testament to both the strength of pro-independence arguments and the organisation and commitment of the Scottish independence grassroots movement that we are succeeding in cutting through the constant media barrage. We’re not only maintaining our position, we are making inroads, and we are doing so despite the fact that there is no date for another independence referendum, despite the fact that the media is ranged against us, despite the fact that most people don’t want to engage with political issues until they have a pressing reason to.

Once there is a certain date for a referendum, many more people who are supportive of yes will start to campaign. Many more people who are unsure about the issues will start to investigate them. Those groups which already exist will see a boost in their active membership and will engage in much more activity. Back during the last referendum campaign, the independence movement had to construct itself from the ground up, this time we have a head start. This time we have thousands of activists who are experienced and knowledgeable.

No wonder the British government and the Conservatives are so desperate to prevent a referendum happening. No wonder BBC management is so concerned to ensure that its viewers in Scotland won’t see anything. It’s because opponents of independence have nothing to compare to the grassroots independence movement, and they ain’t seen nothing yet.

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23 comments on “They ain’t seen nothing yet

  1. Iain Patterson says:


  2. Margaret Noakes says:

    A sheer disgrace that our tv channels were showing snooker and horse racing .Only u tube and Facebook were showing the conference.Sat night tv full of game shows.Do they credit us with any intelligence ?Why pay the tv licence at all ?

  3. Clive Scott says:

    Was at the SNP conference today. Excellent opening speech from Mike Russell – nuanced, thoughtful, intelligent. Super after lunch speech from John Swinney putting the unionist lie to the sword about SNP not getting on with the day job. Engrossing main debate re Growth Commission and currency issue with 4 amendments to the main motion, a direct negative, a remit back to committee, a plea to adopt the euro and an odd ball rant about gender balance all given an airing. Amendments A,B,C all fell, amendment D passed after a close card vote, then the amended main motion passed unanimously. Basically the delegates voted for a speedier adoption of a Scottish Pound than Growth Commission proposed. This will of course be bigged up by the liars in MSM and BBC as a crushing defeat for Nicola and her ministers when it was no such thing.

  4. gavin says:

    This is the same BBC, two of whose senior “journalists”, Brian Taylor and Sarah Smith, professed astonishment that a party which has sought independence for 80 years, would somehow abandon its prime motivation if Brexit was sidelined.
    They lack both professionalism and integrity, and exhibit contempt for their audience. A career with the Sunday Sport, Mail or Express should feature for these two.

  5. Morag Kerr says:

    Paul, what’s your opinion? Nicola seems to be saying that she won’t run a referendum without a section 30 order. There is no reason in the wide world why Westminster should ever grant another section 30 order. The higher the pro-independence polls the less likely they will be to agree! (I suppose it’s possible one might be extracted from an incoming Labour government as the price of a confidence-and-supply agreement, but there are an awful lot of ifs there are we could wait a long time for such a conjunction of the stars.)

    So how do we actually get that certain date for the referendum, within your lifetime and mine?

    • weegingerdug says:

      In the event of persistent refusal from whoever is heading the UK govt to cooperate with a Section 30 order, then any Scottish elections can be turned into a de-facto referendum on independence. The pro-independence parties could agree that the Scottish elections will be fought not on a basis for achieving a mandate for a referendum, but on achieving a mandate for independence itself. The anti-independence parties can’t realistically boycott those elections, and the British govt’s permission is not required.

      • weegingerdug says:

        In fact – that’s precisely what Alex Neil is arguing (although I don’t usually agree with Alex Neil!)

        • Morag Kerr says:

          I have a horrible feeling it’s not as easy as that. Why would Westminster recognise an election result as a proxy for a referendum? And that’s not even thinking about the much greater difficulty of getting 50% of the electorate to vote SNP than to vote Yes in a binary choice.

          But I understood Nicola to have said that the road to independence was an actual referendum, which an election is not. I really really hope there’s a way through it all but I’m worried there’s some rose-coloured thinking going on.

          • weegingerdug says:

            I have no doubt that Nicola Sturgeon’s preferred route is via a referendum recognised in advance by Westminster. However a Scottish parliament elected on an outright manifesto to negotiate independence would certainly be followed by a referendum which Westminster would cooperate in. The political pressure on it to do so would then be intense – and there would certainly be equally intense international pressure upon the UK under such circumstances too.

    • Cubby says:

      “Nicola seems to be saying” – all I have ever read or heard is the word prefer – not must.

  6. alanm says:

    In the event that a Section 30 order is refused then the election which follows automatically becomes a de facto referendum on independence. If Westminster refuses to accept that as fact then they’re effectively telling Scotland that there is no legal, democratic path to independence. How long can that line hold even with the support of the press and the BBC?

    • Robert Harrison says:

      And the yoons forget nicola sturgeon was once studied law so that line wont work especially when the conservatives go on air and say one member cant be punished by the other member for wanting to leave a union yet England wants to do that to us and the media say nothing no wonder nicola saying i wont take lessons from dictats that might not be in office for much longer was a breath of fresh air.

  7. diabloandco says:

    In my quite long lifetime , I have not succeeded in sorting out my ‘ shamefuls’ from my ‘shamelesses”

    Can I use either or to describe the BBBC, STV and the MSM in general?

    What a debt of gratitude we owe you , Wings , Talking up Scotland and so many others who give of their time and energy in giving all those who live in Scotland a true picture of our status while puncturing the lies and obfuscations.

  8. Andy Anderson says:

    If we use all the democratic options open to us we will win our independence.

    Firstly we can demonstrate to the world that we have voted in a majority of independence MP’s at Westminster in 2015 and 2017. It would be ideal to get a fully contested referendum now and if they refuse to accept that then do as Paul suggests do it at the 2021 Holyrood election. If they then do No we repeal the Treaty of Union which is our right.

    We will get international support for these actions.

  9. Robert Harrison says:

    Just shows beyond any doubt the England controlled media just want what they want us to see and hear anything that goes against there anti Scottish rhetoric that cant be spun as snp bad is instantly censored by them just like the English governments its about what they want for Scotland that gets talked about not what Scotland actually wants or needs 2 examples is this and also when they predicted a recession yet Scotland grew 4 times faster than the ruk on growth and that media blackout was so quick no one had time to wonder wheres the recession they claimed.

  10. astytaylor says:

    Good article Paul. Great
    I am selling up in Canada and moving home so there is another yes vote added to the cause
    Starting the pititinthebinmin party
    The roadsides of Moray are a damned disgrace
    Education and honest outdoor work will improve things
    Things were cleaner before
    My sellotaped together i touch is on its last legs hence the lack of full stops and commas
    Brian taylor is no relation btw
    He lacks integrity imho
    Love to all
    C u down the road
    I will be the one picking up rubbish
    Put it in the bin man

  11. Kenzie says:

    I think we’re being hoodwinked.

  12. bringiton says:

    The BBC along with the rest of the London based establishment are trying to hide the fact that Scotland and England are on divergent paths.
    England down the road of American Republicanism and Scotland on the European Social Democratic route.
    These two philosophies are incompatible and that means something has to give.
    The BBC will try to obscure this from Scots for as long as possible because the British state needs Scotland’s resources so we can look forward to more snooker,soaps,murders fitba etc designed to distract us from the realities of life.
    Not for much longer though.

  13. Macart says:

    The mainstream media and their chain tuggers in Westminster aren’t awfully subtle to be sure. 🙄

    Neatly done Paul and well said.

  14. susan says:

    Excellent post Paul. I’m less confident than you though – ever the pessimist, me. I remain firmly behind Independence and am just surprised at how foreign the rest of the UK feels to me now.

  15. Robert Harrison says:

    Even politics live today was replaced by the snooker they must be crapping in there pants over independence as the bbc is at it again trying to act like theres nothing to see here again by putting snooker over there lapdog brewer.

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