2007 - 2020

Clown Coup

392B63C400000578-0-Mr_Woolfe_was_pictured_lying_flat_out_on_the_ground_after_collap-a-54_1476022959108It’s difficult not to be smug when looking across the pond at the depths that US politics has sunk to. Gone are the days when we thought Republican Vice-Presidential candidate Dan Quayle not being able to spell ‘potato’ was a low-point. Now we have a sexual predator seeking office. But we shouldn’t sneer. If American political life is in the cesspit we are in the circus ring with the Killer Clowns ‘taking back control’ across the country.

If British politics pre-Brexit looks and feels like the Day to Day on high-speed loop, it’s not going to get any better any time soon. It’s Harvest Thanksgiving in 2016 and people are collecting for food banks and the pound is tanking.

Philip Bowring points out that this circus-act is already hitting home in the economy before anyone has even got Article 50 out of the holster (‘In Little England, the conceit of Brexit is on full display’):

“The scorn with which Brexit advocates treat other EU members is in stunning contrast to the actual facts about relative conditions. The economics is disturbing. The UK is now running a current account deficit equal to 6 per cent of its gross domestic product. That is the highest of any major country and would be cause for panic in a developing country. It is sustained by a mix of the sale of domestic assets and bonds to foreigners (the latest its £24 billion [HK$232 billion] sale of chip company ARM to Japan), and flow of Chinese and other funk money into property and football teams. Not long ago, the UK had large net overseas assets. Now, debt and dividend service adds to the deficit.”

Ct0-4K9WAAAvQWASome have reported the pound now being sold at less than a euro at airports now. But there’s another more sinister and potentially more long-lasting source of damage that’s going on beyond economic failure and financial insecurity.

English culture and political re-emergence is a phenomena almost completely over-looked by commentators north and south of the border, hiding behind either our own obsession with Scotland or the fast-disapearring entity known as ‘Britain’. England is somewhere at the back of the fridge lurking behind the sausages. As John Harris writes:

“This time it is all about England. As the UK continues to fracture and Scotland goes its own way, England is the country that media people and politicians might still rarely mention by name, but which completely dominates the post-referendum foreground. In this context, England is the nation for which Theresa May claims to speak, and which preoccupies many Labour politicians: a country of hardcore Brexit supporters, St George’s flags hung out on Kent housing estates – and, to paraphrase Blair, immigration, immigration, immigration.”

The new toxicity – whether it’s clowns or the ‘foreign student clampdown’ – or the latest revelations that the list of foreign workers will be ‘secret’ and not public – is a step to the far-right that’s being given no cultural context. As Dani Garvelli writes in the Scotsman: “fascism doesn’t start with yellow stars and death camps; it starts with a subtle process of dehumanisation.”

A Journalism of Violence

CaUqpNxWQAAk8UPBut what’s really fascinating, and should be deeply alarming too, is the way the two referendums we’ve experienced are now being portrayed and re-framed. After the extraordinary ruling of Ipso this week – which fundamentally underscores any deep pessimism about press regulation – the Scottish independence referendum is being re-cast as one characterised by routine violence. At the same time the Brexit referendum, which unleashed real-world racism across the country, emboldening unprecedented levels of violence from Jo Cox’s murder to spikes in xenophobic attacks, is being celebrated as some kind of glorious democratic revival, a re-awakening of grassroots populism and a snub to the political elite.

If journalism is the first draft of history, then the Ipso ruling is doing us all a disservice. It’s not just the Yes movement that is being smeared it is the entire referendum process. This is the Memory Hole. Those are the Memory Thieves.

And right at the heart, the very heart of this myth-making is the Express and the Mail dynasties. Harris again:

“We are in a bad place, but we didn’t get there overnight. Over the past 10 years or so, a small set of English people and organisations have led the toxic recasting of their country. Nigel Farage and his de facto English nationalist party didn’t just push the EU to the top of the political agenda, they also created the impression that they spoke for a forgotten nation. And then there were the English grassroots Conservatives, most of whom raged against David Cameron’s modernisation drive, such as it was. A big role has also been played by the great minds at those self-consciously English media outlets, the Mail and the Express. Witness the Mail’s “Who will speak for England?” front page, used this year to open its campaigning against the EU.”

This shadow England isn’t a new thing, and the idea that it has emerged from nowhere should be resisted. As John Cooper Clark pointed out way back in 1976 the stark hypocrisy between the veneer of respectability and the lynch-mob baiting of the tabloids is age-old:

I’ve seen the poison letters of the horrible hacks
About the yellow peril and the reds and the blacks
And the TUC and its treacherous acts
Kremlin money – All right Jack
I’ve seen how democracy is under duress
But I’ve never seen a nipple in the Daily Express

I’ve seen the suede jack boot the verbal cosh
Whitehouse Whitelaw whitewash
Blood uptown where the vandals rule
Classroom mafia scandal school
They accuse – I confess
I’ve never seen a nipple in the Daily Express

Angry columns scream in pain
Love in vain domestic strain
Divorce disease it eats away
The family structure day by day
In the grim pursuit of happiness
I’ve never seen a nipple in the Daily Express

This paper’s boring mindless mean
Full of pornography the kind that’s clean
Where William Hickey meets Michael Caine
Again and again and again and again
I’ve seen millionaires on the DHSS
But I’ve never seen a nipple in the Daily Express

It’s deeply ironic that a tabloid media that has incited hatred and violence against anything they perceive as ‘other’ for thirty years and more should be tarring the independence movement as one of violence and discord.

It’s democracy they’re scared of.

316709BF00000578-3461844-image-a-6_1456312670977Broken Promises come from Broken Politics run by Broken People

This is a Clown Country where Nigel Farage can describe Donald Trump in the Presidential tv debates: “He was like a Silverback Gorilla prowling the studio” who “dominated her”.

The language of racism and suppressed sexual expression isn’t a coincidence. It’s about the public loss of power as the sureties of status and role fare exposed and the patriarchy falters conveying about as much credibility as the authenticity of the Silverback Gorillas hair.

The danger is that the re-writing of history and the lack of real outlets for political voice gives rise to a new apathy to sit alongside the new fascism. A derisory sense of gawping disbelief is in the air. What we will need is to have concrete and practical policies of openness and internationalism, celebrate our multi-cultural Scotland, and to confront and challenge the rampant racism on our streets and in the highest echelons of government.

Rejecting the tabloid agenda and re-claiming our own very recent history is a key part of that process. Because, despite the desperate re-writing, as Iain Macwhirter has written:

“The UK is now a very different country: one that has suffered something like a rightwing coup d’etat albeit without the bullets.”

But if we are to clamber out of the gutter we’ll have to take some tough challenges too. Clinton is a necessary vote, but a difficult one to get excited about. She represents a new low-bar and goes against the zeitgeist of popular politics. Over here in Clown Country we’re not exactly over-brimming with inspiring competent and visionary politicians either. We’ll need to do it any way and stop looking out for political heroes to cling to. Part of the facing-up to new realities is finding agency and inspiration outside the corridors of parliaments and the broken politics. We shouldn’t get too smug about the dire state of American politics when ours is in such a mess too. And if we are complacent in our northern stronghold we should remember this is what we voted to be part of.

 

 

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  1. bringiton says:

    “WE voted for”?
    Count me out on that one.
    However,correct that Scotland unfortunately did.
    England’s right wing press either have to accept their part in what is happening South of the border or acknowledge that the rhetoric they publish day in day out has little or no effect on it’s readership.
    So,which is it?
    As to comparing the two referendums,it would only be so if English voters had been promised complete control over immigration by the EU prior to the vote,only to be told “but only on Sundays” after they voted to Remain.
    That is where we are at with our independence referendum.

  2. Jeff says:

    “England is the country that media people and politicians might still rarely mention by name…”

    Pardon!?

  3. Derek says:

    Englishness is something we’re exhorted not to mention, because that would be racist, a Scottish xenophobia apparently observed during the 2014 referendum campaign. That’s something the Express failed to mention: the hordes of people from Morningside and Bearsden frothing at English people, wanting to send them back home. Another parallel universe for unionists to pursue …

  4. Alf Baird says:

    At least with ‘The Donald’ ‘what you see is what you get’. Not so with machine politician Mrs Clinton, who actually reminds me quite a bit of our ‘timid’ leader, trying her best not to scare the unionist horses: http://www.heraldscotland.com/news/14792579.Nicola_Sturgeon_has_shown__more_timidity_than_radicalism___says_Kenny_MacAskill/

    Independence is ‘radical’ so if we really want it we need to get ‘radical’. Being merely ‘competent’ never won any nation its independence.

  5. Alan says:

    The UK is now running a current account deficit equal to 6 per cent of its gross domestic product. That is the highest of any major country and would be cause for panic in a developing country.

    It’s actual cause for panic in the UK for a number of reasons. This is explained better than I can do at: 2 Brexit Scenarios. Or, Why The Current Account Could Matter:

    The fact that in the last quarter of 2015 the UK borrowed 7% of GDP from the rest of the world. The current account deficit is at its highest level in decades and as the Governor of the Bank has put it, we are “reliant on the kindness of strangers”….It’s easy to worry about the current account deficit but sometimes hard to see a catalyst that would turn a vulnerability into an actual problem….the interaction of a large current account deficit and still high household debt levels could put the Bank in a terrible position if foreign investors ever decided to re-assess the risk that lending to the UK posed. The real worry is that after a vote to leave, foreign investors re-assess the risk of lending to the UK and decide to cut back. The UK would face slowing investment, rising inflation, rising borrowing costs for firms, households, banks and possibly the government itself whilst asset prices fell sharply. Meanwhile the Bank would be a less strong position to offer policy support and it isn’t entirely implausible that the long waited bond vigilantes would arrive, worry about lending to the UK government and push up government borrowing costs too. The fiscal space to provide support could fall.

    Note that UK household debt level is high and increasing rapidly. And for an extra twist on this involving oil see: Scottish independence, UK dependency. This was written just before the Indyref but the prediction has come to pass anyway, not because Scotland became independent but because the price collapsed.

    Tucked away in the Financial Times’ report earlier in the week was the giveaway. “Currency investors” would apparently be “particularly concerned by the UK’s persistent current account deficit if this were no longer offset by North Sea oil revenues.”

    Based on last week’s performance, May apparently missed the BofE’s “reliant on the kindness of strangers” talk.

  6. muttley79 says:

    Clinton is a necessary vote, but a difficult one to get excited about. She represents a new low-bar and goes against the zeitgeist of popular politics.

    Just because Trump is an obnoxious, arrogant, narcissistic bully does not mean Hillary Clinton is any better. Look at Clinton’s appalling record, voting for the wars in Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan, she wants to remove Assad via regime change, she has been a shill for Walmart and Goldman Sachs, she voted for the Patriot Act, she referred to black teenagers as super predators in the 1990s, she would as POTUS support the Israeli state to the maximum degree and ignore Palestinians’ legitimate aspirations, she would almost certainly continue to be hostile to Scottish independence, she hates the Russian state with a passion, and she is belligerent about the growing power of China. Nothing in her political record suggests she will not try to be as belligerent as possible against the last two states and powers, with all the implications that has for the world and the wider environment.

    Hillary Clinton does not have the support the neoconservative establishment in America for nothing. She openly admires the war criminal, Henry Kissinger. She is an ardent American exceptionalist and ultra nationalist, and has the appalling Madeleine Albright as one of her closest supporters, who famously said that the death of half a million Iraqi civilians was a price worth paying for sanctions in the 1990s.

    The DNC broke and violated their own rules during her primary against Bernie Sanders, and Hillary Clinton’s response was to hire the DNC chair, straight after she had resigned! There were many instances of manipulation of voting during that primary. Dodgy does not even begin to scratch the surface of what went on. This post is a tiny illustration of why Hillary Clinton would almost certainly be a complete disaster as POTUS if she is elected. People should not kid themselves, nor deceive themselves about the nature of her politics, which are right wing and militaristic. The truth is Clinton is as dangerous as Trump. The American electorate do not really have a choice.

  7. Alan says:

    “Just because Trump is an obnoxious, arrogant, narcissistic bully does not mean Hillary Clinton is any better.”

    Yes it does. He’ll be a lot worse than she is.

    1. muttley79 says:

      Nope, Hillary Clinton is just as dangerous as Trump. She has been all but endorsed by the likes of Dick Cheney, Henry Kissinger, and other neoconservatives. To say Clinton is inclined to war and violent regime change, and is sympathetic to the MIC in America, is putting it very, very mildly indeed.

      1. Alan says:

        But on those grounds Trump is an even worse candidate than she is. By all accounts he’s even more of a warmonger. And he has far fewer qualms about torture, violating human rights, and no one in their right mind should trust him with the nuclear codes. With Clinton there is at least a possibility the the resurgent left-wing of the party (Warren, Sanders) will be able to moderate her. You can have no such hope if Trump is elected.

        1. muttley79 says:

          I am sure Hillary Clinton voted against torture, the Patriot Act etc….She supported the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, she is now making aggressive noises against Russia and Syria. Clinton infamous psychopathic laugh on TV when Gaddafi was brutally murdered is hardly reassuring. The national security establishment in America will be licking their collective lips no doubt because they know that Hillary Clinton is in their pocket, and has a strong inclination for as much war and regime change as is possible.

          Sanders and Warren are unfortunately nothing compared to the influence and power of the likes of the CIA, NSA, and the Joints Chiefs. The idea that they would be a) able to moderate Hillary Clinton, with the aforementioned agencies and organisations around her, and b) that she would pay any attention to them, now that she had become president, are both vanishing thin imo. They would both have served their purpose.

          1. Alan says:

            And you are happy with Trump having the nuclear codes?

          2. Alan says:

            And Trump’s incoherent foreign policy? I like Putin, I’ll have Mexico build a wall, we’ll ban people based on their religion from entering the US, we’ll bring back torture, blah, blah, blah. But it will be really great, the best! He’s an idiot and dangerous. He’s the road to a worse American foreign policy.

          3. muttley79 says:

            This is a reply to Alan:

            And you are happy with Trump having the nuclear codes?

            No, I said Clinton was as dangerous as Trump. I don’t think Trump will win, I prefer Jill Stein, the Green candidate for POTUS. Clinton will likely win, but she will be a disaster for the reasons I have given imo. Beyond a defensive comment or two, you have not really addressed the points I was making in regards to her militarism and ardent neoliberalism. The truth is I think Hillary Clinton is incapable of making the required substantially changes necessary to the American political, economic structure. Her political record speaks for itself. She is as far away from some like FDR, let alone RFK and JFK.

            As for your last post:

            And Trump’s incoherent foreign policy? I like Putin, I’ll have Mexico build a wall, we’ll ban people based on their religion from entering the US, we’ll bring back torture, blah, blah, blah. But it will be really great, the best! He’s an idiot and dangerous. He’s the road to a worse American foreign policy.

            The fact that even Trump knows that it would be an absolutely stupid move to confront Putin and Russia and Clinton does not, shows you just how dangerous she will be if elected POTUS. Hillary Clinton is not stupid enough to come out with Trump’s Mexico wall idea I will give her that. So your argument for Hillary Clinton essentially amounts to the fact she has not endorsed the biggest jackass and tool ever to run for president’s idea of building a wall around the US-Mexico border. That is just not convincing at all. Clinton does not have a problem with Israel building its own wall though does she? Nor does she see anything wrong in being an admirer of Henry Kissinger, he of the blanket bombing of Cambodia, and the support for the Pinochet coup of 1973, and his brutal dictatorship.

          4. muttley79 says:

            We came, we saw he died:

          5. Alan says:

            If you want all the dirt on Clinton read The Intercept. There’s plenty of it. But she’s still the least rotten option.

  8. Maria F says:

    “But what’s really fascinating, and should be deeply alarming too, is the way the two referendums we’ve experienced are now being portrayed and re-framed”

    To me this is simply the confirmation of what I have started to believe the establishment and the fatcat press moguls think of the people of Scotland: an inferior class that is only useful for the votes they can provide to unionist parties with during a GE, the natural assets their land can provide the UK government with to cover the holes of Westminster political and financial mismanagement and of course the vast areas where those in power they can dump their waste on.

    “If journalism is the first draft of history, then the Ipso ruling is doing us all a disservice. It’s not just the Yes movement that is being smeared it is the entire referendum process”

    I would add to this that IPSO has given a right stab in the back to Journalism itself as well. When the so called ‘regulator’ condones the publication of tacky, incorrect and biased opinion that passes for news and therefore misinforms people, I think they are also marking the end of journalism. Well, I guess you can argue that authentic journalism doesn’t brainwash people as effectively as pure PR does therefore is not longer of use.

    “Clinton is a necessary vote”

    I am sorry, but I am not so sure about that. The choice between Trump, Clinton or none of them is for the American people to make, not for us: it is them who will have to suffer whoever gets into power.
    I acknowledge that I am not much into American politics but from where I am standing she is no any better than Trump. For what I saw of the process the real candidate was carefully taken away of the race by the American establishment so the Americans can now be presented with a choice between bad and bad: a safe bet. A little bit like the illusion of the choice the unionist people in Scotland have between Ruth’s Tories and Kezia’s labour.

    Thank you Mike for this informative article. It is a shame that the MSM chooses to be complacent with these dangerous issues. I have always wondering if the real agenda of the ‘press’ is to divide opinion: you know what they say, ‘divide and conquer’.

  9. Yan says:

    “What we will need is to have concrete and practical policies of openness and internationalism, celebrate our multi-cultural Scotland, and to confront and challenge the rampant racism on our streets and in the highest echelons of government.”

    No matter how passive the nationalism it can not be reconciled with internationalism or multiculturalism its is a contradiction.

    Our multi-cultural Scotland sounds exclusive will those Scots that hold an opposing political opinion and do not wish to “celebrate our multi-cultural Scotland” be confronted and challenged on “our streets” for their “rampant racism” and exiled to England?

    The peculiar brand of progressive Scottish nationalism will most likely self-destruct.

    1. muttley79 says:

      Should you not be much more worried about British nationalism? After all we are heading out of the EU as part of the British state, and there is a lot of violent xenophobia around and talk of foreigners in a pejorative sense, something I noticed was very discernible in the No campaign to independence, with Darling and Curran going on and on about foreigners in a negative sense.

    2. Maria F says:

      I think you find Yan that what we currently have in Scotland is a movement of independentism from the UK rather than nationalism. Scotland wants to gain control over its own affairs, which currently lie in England, that is not nationalism, that is independentism.

      Scotland is not fighting to impose “Scottishness” in the way the current establishment, the MSM and some elite seem to be attempting to over-impose a sense of “britishness” and “british values” across all the UK: their apparent rejection to migrants is a consequence of this: they are not British enough.

      “No matter how passive the nationalism it can not be reconciled with internationalism or multiculturalism its is a contradiction”
      And no better example of what you say than the British nationalism we are being subjected to: supression of anything Scottish, rejection of the EU and now rejection of migrants.

      In a completely opposite way, Scotland voted overwhelmingly to remain in the EU and is embracing immigrants. Scotland voted for internationalism and openess, and I think this underlines the fact that what Scotland is pursuing is independentism from the UK not nationalism.

      “The peculiar brand of progressive Scottish nationalism will most likely self-destruct”
      If what you mean is the Scottish independentism from the UK you find that it will only self-destruct when Scotland finally gets its independence.

      But for now, Scottish independentism from the Uk is being fueled every day by the outrageous amount of mis and disinformation regarding Scottish matters in the MSM, the decisions of a UK government Scotland rejected at the polls during the GE and of course, the trail of self-destructing promises and reassurances given by the unionist parties before indiref1:

      Remember those Yan? I do

      the only way to ensure that Scotland will remain in the EU is by voting NO…
      13 frigates will be built…
      HMRC jobs….
      HQ of certain banks would only move if Scotland becomes independent…
      Pension security…
      Financial stability and security with the sterling….
      Scotland would be listened to in Westminster….

      and the absolute best:

      Scotland will become the most devolved country in the world…
      .

      1. Yan says:

        Independentism 🙂

        Reep what you sow -the Scottish push for independence has fuelled that aggressive British nationalism, a point that has been downplayed is just how much an influence the independence debate has had on British politics – the destruction of the Labour Party in Scotland obviously had an impact in England as did the SNPs political incursions into England. Incursions that were not only punching to the left at the British Labour Party but were provoking British nationalism in England. Nicola Sturgeon was a more effective provocateur of British nationalism than Nick Griffin was an agent. The SNP courteously should have fought the independence battle at home one of their greatest weakness is self-righteously trying to be the all things to all men.

        The independentism you dream of will have its foundation in Scotland not on the political animosity that has been provoked on a foreign field.

        1. Maria F says:

          “the Scottish push for independence has fuelled that aggressive British nationalism”

          I have two words for you Yan:

          P s y c h o l o g i c a l P r o j e c t i o n

          Honestly Yan, I don’t know if I should start laughing my head off at your comment or rather feel sorry for the honest people who truly believe in unionism and is unethically being manipulated by self-serving hypocrites using outrageous comments like this to get their way no matter what.

          One of my favourite outrageous ‘fear-inducing’ comments from unionists on the run to indiref1 was that cracking one attributed to some Labour bigwig about saying that Scotland would not be able to get organ transplants and blood transfusions if independent. Disgusting, no? Well Yan, I have to say that you blaming now Scotland for british nationalism trumps even that.

          It is beyond me how you can even dare to blame Scotland for british nationalism when you have people of the likes of Farage that have been teasing with ‘britishness’, british values (whatever they are) and even xenophobia for years to get their way and now even Ms May and others in her party descend to the same level and start flirting with xenophobia to scrap some votes from UKIPers? Or you really are completely blind to facts Yan or you have absolutely no shame.

          Would you mind much me asking what political party you support? I have to ask this because blaming Scotland for British nationalism is as appalling as the selfish turn around of Ms Davidson in her position about the EU: stuff the people of Scotland; her career and the power of her party is what matters after all, even if she has to stand elbow with elbow with those masters down south and their flirting with xenophobia. And sure, as appalling as demanding solutions from the FM of Scotland to the problems Ms Davidson’s party has created: another symptom of psychological projection, you think?

          I really did think that I had heard all sort of lies and crap excuses from unionists to push the Scottish people down, to diminish them, to silence their voices, to stop their self-determination dreams on its tracks, to make them believe they are worthless and they live in a worthless place . But you have proven me wrong Yan: by the look of it, there is not bottom end to the low levels self-serving unionism can go to keep hold of Scotland. But, what is really puzzling is that if Scotland is so worthless, Yan, why this obsession by the British nationalists to keep Scotland under their heel? You think it is a power thing? Or rather stupidity and poor financial sense? Perhaps you could enlighten us with that.

          Scotland has been told that is far too poor to survive on its own. Don’t you think this is rather ironic Yen, when turns out that Scotland has a wealth of resources that many countries of the size of Scotland and above (even England) can only dream of? I certainly do.

          Scotland has been bombarded by the corrupt biased press with the nonsense that there is not a chance for independence because of GERS and the deficit. Don’t you think it is really funny that considering that the bulk of taxes and most of the economy matters are not fully devolved to Scotland actually that deficit shown by GERS is nothing less than a supreme reflection of the absolutely appalling level of mismanagement and incompetence by those at Westminster running the Scottish economy and resources? Well, I do.

          Scotland is not allowed to have a proper Scottish Six News program, generated and run by the people of Scotland, because according to those in London, the Scottish people is not smart enough to run the cameras and whatnot. However, the BBC is more than happy to keep taking Scottish’s people money in the form of TV licences: the BBC obviously thinks the Scottish people knows how to count coins an notes to pay the right amount.

          Scotland is constantly being told that is a country full of benefit scroungers, when turns out the rest of the UK has been feeding of Scotland’s resources. I mean, take the BBC as an example, how much does the BBC take away from Scotland and how much does it invest back? How much of all the wealth taken from Scotland in the form of Oil revenues over decades has been invested back into Scotland? And what about the VAT that Police Scotland has to pay while the rest of the police forces in the Union don’t?

          Scotland is constantly being told that it can not survive without the subsides coming from England. Considering the enormous effort the Tories are doing to cut subsides to renewables in Scotland, stopping those frigates to be built in Scotland, taking all those HMRC jobs down south, Osborne and co making a massive booboo of the Oil industry to make it look non profitable etc, etc, etc, it is beginning to become crystal clear that the situation is the other way round: it is the rest of the UK that cannot survive without the subsides coming from Scotland and because of this Westminster ensures that rather than flourishing, Scotland wastes away so it remains firmly attached to the Union. I didn’t see Ms DAvidson or Mundell doing nothing to stop that injustice.

          Is there any more nonsense Scotland can be blamed for? Climate change, perhaps? The rain or the lack of? That the Tories may have got found out in their fiddling with the electoral funding? The contamination of table water in Wyoming due to fracking? The extinction of dinosaurs? Trump winning the elections in US? Come on Yan, surely you can come up with something outrageous like that.

          “The independentism you dream of will have its foundation in Scotland not on the political animosity that has been provoked on a foreign field”

          You lost me here.

          The independentism that almost if not more than a 50% of the electorate of Scotland is pursuing no matter how much Ms Dugdale and Ms Davidson are fighting to ignore has its strongest foundations in the massive democratic deficit for Scotland at Westminster and the obvious fact that it is actually England and England’s elected MPs who are running Scotland’s affairs and in a ‘Union of equals’ that is not right.
          This is a democratic deficit that rather than being fought by all political parties and branches in Scotland, is being fueled by unionist parties such as SLab, SConservatives and SLibDems by their rejection to indiref2 because for those three parties it was never about the betterment of the people of Scotland, it always has been and always will be about their parties gaining power at WEstminster. But you know all that already, don’t you Yan?

          Come on, have you come up with something else Scotland can be blamed for?

          1. D. Smart says:

            I suspect that Yan will be able to conjure up something… There are none so blind as they who cannot see… Great writing by the way Maria F

          2. Yan says:

            Independentism 🙂

            The observation was that the Scottish push for independence has had an effect on British politics, the contention was that in part that effect provoked a response that heightened British nationalism. Strange then to suggest that the Scottish independence debate has taken place outside of British politics and then complain when that (England based) British nationalism component pushes back.

            Short memory was it not the EU that more or less said stuff the people of Scotland during the indyref. Unlike Alex Salmond, I have never shook the hand of Donald Trump.

            Sure Oor Nige is not adverse to Scottish selfie politics as we are all, in effect,”Jock Tamson’s Bairns”.

          3. Maria F says:

            Yan

            “The observation was that the Scottish push for independence has had an effect on British politics”

            Interesting that you say that Yan because from where I am standing it looks exactly the opposite: it is the movement of the English center-ground politics to the right (New Labour?, UKIP?) what left Scotland disenfranchised years ago. Now Scotland is even more disenfranchised by the fact that by voting for an alternative to British politics it became immediately obvious to the Scottish population the massive democratic deficit Scotland is subjected to within this union.

            “while the contention was that in part that effect provoked a response that heightened British nationalism”

            British (English) nationalism has always been there Yan and you know it. The only difference is that while up to now Scotland tended to just suck it up, it is refusing to do that anymore.

            “Strange then to suggest that the Scottish independence debate has taken place outside of British politics”

            No Yan, the suggestion is that the Scottish independence movement has taken place as a consequence of British politics and the politicians that treat Scotland as if it was a colony of England.

            “and then complain when that (England based) British nationalism component pushes back”
            English nationalism doesn’t push back Yan, it aims to suffocate Scottish opinion, the right of the Scottish people to choose who they want to be governed by, Scottish culture and Scottish history. The independence movement in Scotland is not pushing into England or claiming anything from England, is claiming the right for Scottish people to govern themselves and to run their country themselves rather than having a few english MPs from a political party Scotland rejected at the polls doing that for them. British (or English) nationalism is attempting to claim rights on Scotland’s assets and territory by silencing the rights of the people of Scotland: that is not pushing Yan, that is imperialism

            “Short memory was it not the EU that more or less said stuff the people of Scotland during the indyref”

            You are showing even shorter memory Yan by forgetting (or ignoring rather) the fact that a 62% of those voting in Scotland in the EU referendum did so to remain. That is what counts Yan, Scotland voted to remain in the EU so why on earth should it leave the EU just because another country of the union following a completely different trajectory in politics voted to leave?

            “Unlike Alex Salmond, I have never shook the hand of Donald Trump”
            And?

            “Sure Oor Nige is not adverse to Scottish selfie politics as we are all, in effect,”Jock Tamson’s Bairns”

            Your Nige was only there for a reason. The coward couldn’t run fast enough after the deed was done. Throw the exploding bombshell onto everybody else and run. Exactly like Cameron, Gove and even Johnson. But hey, you can keep all the Niges you want. I rather stand by oor Nicola: she may not ride a buffalo or a tank, but she was the only politician that knew what to do after the aftermath of the 23rd of June. Still does today, actually, while everybody else run like a headless chicken, remain in a constant state of confusion and dream of a possibility to remain in both unions or throw themselves into flirting with xenophobia for the sake of a few votes.

            For instance Yan, when did the PM or Ruth DAvidson addressed publicly the EU citizens living in the UK and Scotland to reassure them and answer their questions?

            When did Ms Davidson apologised by misleading so many into voting NO during indiref1 by saying that this was the only way to ensure Scotland would remain in the EU?

  10. Alan says:

    the Scottish push for independence has fuelled that aggressive British nationalism

    Are you blaming supporters of Scottish independence for aggressive British nationalism? Really? Should just ignore our own economic and social interests because if we vote for them we might cause people elsewhere to do some really nasty stuff and we’d be responsible for their actions. Hmm. Where have I heard this argument before?

  11. Yan says:

    Maria F,

    ” … it is the movement of the English center-ground politics to the right (New Labour?, UKIP?) what left Scotland disenfranchised years ago.”

    Remarkable the Scottish contribution to not only British party politics but the shaping of opinion across the UK, for that Scottish influence think of the likes of Gordon Brown and Malcolm Rifkind enough alone to make the English cry disenfranchisement. In short an Englishman can feel as disenfranchised as his like-minded Scottish neighbours – a structural failure of British democracy. Disenfranchisement is a nice shout at the dinner table but to argue that simply because of being outvoted in a democracy is a wee bit undemocratic.

    Maybe more than some would like to admit the political disaffection that propelled Ukip was in many ways the same as that which propelled the SNP, putting all else aside that political disaffection has found its expression in sovereignty the EU has been deposed will the Scots do the same to that other Union?

    The third way politics has blurred the vision of the electorate with the body politic out of focus they strike for the head.

    Independentism 🙂 is a state of mind.

    1. Maria F says:

      Yan

      “for that Scottish influence think of the likes of Gordon Brown and Malcolm Rifkind enough alone to make the English cry disenfranchisement”

      Well, tremendous examples there Yan. Brown is not a good example of ‘Scottish Influence’ if you are referring to independentism, as he never fought for Scotland to be independent, quite the opposite in fact. I actually often wonder if he really has Scotland’s best interests at heart. The best example of where his interests lie is his intervention to stop independence by his offer of the infamous vow and Scotland becoming the most devolved country of the world. A pack of lies, of course. But was that offer for the betterment of Scotland? Of course not, that was all for the interests of his party and to maintain the establishment’s grip on Scotland. Brown was a british establisment politician: where you were born makes no difference whatsoever. It is what you feel you are what does.

      “Independentism is a state of mind”

      For you it may well be Yan. For me it most definitely is not.

      For me it is the overwhelming desire of your country to be able to control its own affairs, without having an oppressing and selfish neighbour doing it for you and for its own benefit.

      It is the wanting the democratic vote of the people of your country to count for something, rather than being constantly silenced by the shear numbers of your neighbouring country.

      It is the wanting for your fellow countrymen to be able to chose how to run their country and not being dragged constantly like rag dolls because all decisions are constantly being taken by MPs elected by the citizens of your neighbour country which don’t have the best interests of your own country at heart.

      It is the desperation to see how the natural resources of your country are taken away for the benefit of others while the rightful owners of those resources are silenced and diminished so they feel grateful for the few crumbs that are thrown at them.

      That is not a state of mind Yan, that is the acknowledgement that democracy for Scotland within the union is a farce.

      “The third way politics has blurred the vision of the electorate”
      It may have blurred you vision Yan, but it hasn’t blurred mine. Scottish Independence is not about right, left or centre. it is about being in control of your own affairs and resources rather than having your neighbour doing it for you.

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