Archive | May, 2019

A modest proposal

31 May

Peter A Bell

With the Referendums (Scotland) Bill now going through Parliament, we can be confident that the Scottish Government has a plan which will ensure that the people of Scotland are able to exercise our right of self-determination in accordance with the norms of democracy. There will be a referendum – with or without permission from Sajid Javid or any of the other anti-democratic British Nationalist ideologues vying to become the next Prime Minister of the disintegrating British state.

And that referendum will be soon. For reasons which I have outlined elsewhere, my money is on September of this year. Talk of the “latter half” of 2020 is, I believe, a diversion. And, even if it isn’t and this really is Nicola Sturgeon’s preferred time-frame, I reckon unfolding circumstances will force an earlier vote. I’m absolutely sure that she and Mike Russell have prepared for this. The option has certainly been…

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The cleverness of the referendum bill

30 May

Wee Ginger Dug

permissionnotrequired

The Scottish Government has published its referendums bill, and as Andrew Tickell points out in The National, it makes for some very interesting reading.

I’ve always been wary of an independence referendum without a Section 30 order because of the risk that it would be boycotted by the anti-independence parties. This is despite the fact that there are, as Andrew Tickell pointed out, legal arguments both for and against an independence referendum without a Section 30 order. Right now the likes of Ruth Davidson and her pals in the press assert it would be illegal, but the truth is that we don’t actually know whether it would be illegal because the matter has never been tested in the courts. Until such time as it is tested in the courts and there is a definitive legal ruling, anyone who asserts that an independence referendum without a Section 30 order would…

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The fight is on!

30 May

Peter A Bell

The Scottish Government appears to be proceeding on the assumption that there will still be a Scottish Parliament in the “latter half” of 2020. There can’t be many politically aware people in Scotland who consider that a safe assumption.

But I use the word “appears” advisedly. Because everything we know about the First Minister and her team tells us that they are not the kind of people who make rash assumptions. They are, however, the kind of astute political operators who recognise the importance of keeping their options open.

Nicola Sturgeon’s talk of a new referendum sometime in the second half of next year jarred with more than a few commentators. It’s not that this degree of specificity on timing was unexpected. The vagueness and ambiguity couldn’t go on much longer. In truth, Ms Sturgeon’s timing is probably perfect. She has chosen just the right moment to give some definition…

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Destroying the things you love, and being destroyed by them

29 May

Wee Ginger Dug

It’s funny how Ruth Davidson is very quick to claim that the people of Scotland don’t want another independence referendum, yet she carefully avoids saying that the people of Scotland don’t want Brexit. A couple of days ago, 62% of Scottish voters opted for parties opposed to Brexit, but Ruth never seems to find time to mention that Scotland is opposed to Brexit. Instead she devotes her time and energy in a pursuit that there is no such clear evidence for, the claim that Scotland doesn’t want another independence referendum. You might think that Ruth was motivated in equal parts by opportunism and desperation, and you’d be right.

Today the Holyrood bill to provide a framework for another independence referendum was published, and Ruth Davidson took to Twitter to ask people to support her bid to block it. She took to Twitter because she tried an election, but got resoundingly…

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The politics of jimmy wigs

28 May

My dad was English and to me, he sounded Scottish but to friends, he sounded English!

Wee Ginger Dug

jimmywig

The Uncle Tam is the Scot who tries to ingratiate himself with the English upper and middle classes by pandering to all the worst racist stereotypes which are current about Scottish people amongst sections of the English population. There’s a long list of them, the drunken Scot, the begging Scot, the ungrateful Scot, the chippy Scot, the nostalgic Scot, the violent Scot, the incomprehensible Scot, the self-pitying Scot, the grievance-mongering Scot, the tight-fisted Scot, the dour Scot, the sullen Scot, the vegetable-phobic Scot, the English-hating Scot, and the humourless Scot who points out that these tropes are indeed racist stereotypes and nor merely harmless banter.

Some Scots who have moved to England feel the need to effect to despise their fellow country men and women in order to make their new English colleagues and acquaintances feel more at ease with the quasi-foreigner in their midst. They torture their accents, they…

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The choice

28 May

Wee Ginger Dug

The recriminations are in full flow following the EU elections which saw both the Labour party and the Tories in Scotland perform appallingly poorly. Well, I say appallingly, but that’s only because schadenfreudingly isn’t an adverb.

The Tories have reacted in their typical manner, by refusing to accept that it’s happening. Just as they managed to persuade themselves and an overly eager Scottish press that they had really won the General Election in Scotland by virtue of coming a distant second, now they’re consoling themselves with the delusion that no one really won the EU elections in Scotland at all. The SNP coming first in every Scottish local authority area except Orkney and Shetland, on an increased turnout, isn’t really a victory. The Tory party continues to dig itself a deep hole on social media by promoting this line, insisting that the SNP didn’t really do that well and that…

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#ScotRef2019

28 May

Peter A Bell

I have frequently observed that there is no path to independence which does not pass through a point at which there is direct and potentially acrimonious confrontation with the British state. This is necessarily so as to imagine that it might be possible to end the Union whilst adhering to laws and procedures designed to preserve it is to go against all logic.

Given that there must be confrontation – that the Scottish Government and Scottish Parliament must breach the British state’s rules in order to restore constitutional normality to Scotland – then it is clearly vital that this confrontation be on terms determined by the Scottish Government. It would be obvious folly to go head-to-head with the British state on ground of their choosing. The Scottish Government must choose the rule to break. It must decide the issue on which to confront the British state. And it must decide…

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In The Shadows

28 May

Autoimmunitygirl

With his permission I am writing this post on how illness and diseases have changed my husbands life forever, despite the fact that he doesn’t actually have them. He is my full time carer now but he never imagined that this could possibly have happened to him or to us and I marvel at the way it has transformed him and who he is today.

When we first started dating I was most definitely the more assertive, confident and the more outgoing. Because of the roles I had carried out in my life I was used to being a manager and a facilitator. I was all about a strong mental attitude and a positive approach. That was who I was then and I can only assume that was some of the things he most liked about me.

I have since learned that he also liked my intelligence and my loyal…

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The only hope of salvation

28 May

Wee Ginger Dug

indyrefsalvation
Ruth Davidson asked the people of Scotland to use these elections to send a message to Nicola Sturgeon, and that’s exactly what the people of Scotland have done. It’s just a terrible shame for Ruth that the message isn’t the one that she wanted. The people of Scotland have sent a very clear message, and that message is that we’re not at all impressed with the Tories, with the Labour party, with Brexit, or with how Scotland has been treated during this entire sorry Brexit process. Scotland said in resoundingly clear terms that it wants a say on whether we are to be taken out of the EU. Scotland demands another referendum on EU membership. Scotland has said you can stick your Tory and Farage Brexit.

The European elections have shown conclusively that Scotland is in a very different political place from the rest of the UK. Where the story…

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Gallery

Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them

27 May

A Wilderness of Peace

As predicted by nobody (except those who were paying attention) the European Elections were a resounding victory for Remain-supporting parties in Scotland – who won every single voting area, as well as more or less matching the EU referendum result of 62% of the vote – and an unmitigated disaster for them in the rest of the UK.

And amidst all the hand-wringing and caterwauling about what on earth the UK Remain Camp can do to solve this crisis, they actually exacerbate the problem in the process.

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