2007 - 2022

Buckfast means Buckfast

16003058_10102008640076591_7166899617728801312_nJust as we thought ‘thanks Christ 2016 is over’ and things can only get better (wait a minute, not that), 2017 emerges out of the glaur in all its glory. This week two momentously dire events loom large. Today, after months of shambling vacuous nothingness, our Prime Minister will announce our True Path. It will be presented not as the obvious and only solution of a politician cornered by her own craven stupidity, but as the cunning ruse carved-out of many a late night with Liam Fox and Boris Johnson. Three days later, we get President Trump and his coterie of Mad Dogs and War Criminals.

A “clean break” sounds like the good news you get when one of your limbs has snapped. Make no mistake the Prime Ministers 12 Point Plan is the hardest of hard Brexits.

In her clearest statement yet on Brexit (admittedly not a competitive group), she will declare: “Not partial membership of the European Union, associate membership of the European Union, or anything that leaves us half-in, half-out.

“We do not seek to adopt a model already enjoyed by other countries. We do not seek to hold on to bits of membership as we leave.

May’s “half-in, half-out” statements confirms that she will announce the UK is prepared to leave the single market, the European Court of Justice, and probably the customs union as well.

This has political, economic and constitutional consequences, and she doesn’t care. It is unequivocally treating both Scotland and Northern Ireland with utter contempt.

Eyes Wide Shut

In her speech she says: “A little over six months ago the British people voted for change. They voted to shape a brighter future for our country. They voted to leave the European Union and embrace the world. And they did so with their eyes open: accepting that the road ahead will be uncertain at time, but believing that it leads towards a brighter future for their children – and their grandchildren too. And it is the job of this Government to deliver it. That means more than negotiating our new relationship with the EU. It means taking the opportunity of this great moment of national change to step back and ask ourselves what kind of country we want to be.”

c2phhlgxeaak4kc-jpg-largeOf course, none of this is true.

The idea that the people voted with clarity in an honest and open campaign – in a year haunted by lies, distortion, misinformation and murder, is an extraordinary statement of delusion. Even ignoring the worst of this instant historical revisionism, the PM’s Brexit hypocrisy is staggering.

As her Chancellor hinted at at the weekend, Britain could cut taxes to create a corporate tax haven if the EU fails to provide it with an agreement on market access after Brexit. Which it of course will. So the idea of a corporate tax-haven will be floated as the inevitable unavoidable consequence of the recalcitrant Europeans ‘out to get us’ fine Brits and not, as it very clearly is, the political objective of our elite political class to further enrich themselves and their associates all along.

The Conservatives inability to see beyond a pre-Copernican geopolitics in which Britain lies at the very centre of the universe is clearly blinding them to the reality of life in 2017 21C Europe. And central to this Grand Delusion is the trojan horse of Britain re-made as a low-tax, low-skilled, low-paid backwater, a haven for the rich and a hell for the rest of us. This hardest of Brexit deals means Austerity Max.

This is the politics of Britannia Unchained and the rhetoric is heady.

Remember when the use of the word “freedom” was banned by SNP strategist’s in the indyref? British nationalists have no such qualms. As Alec Finlay has noted:

“Today May will climb on her high horse, “Britain”, and speak for “The Country”. Let’s not forget her cunning during the Referendum, hiding away in the hayloft and refusing to commit herself in terms of the most important decision of our time. BoJo may be the fool, but she’s the sly fox, the plotter who outdid the plotters. We’ve never had a politician who gained such power through cowardice. That’s why she will use the racist card to remain in power as long as she can.”

Meanwhile China and America have swapped. One is committed to globalisation, trade and deal-making. The other is a protectionist dysfunctional polity with closing borders and a state police-force.

576cfb1c2200002e00f82c23Outwith these isles people are looking-on with incredulity. The German newspaper Welt, questioning Hammond observes: “The impression on the European continent is also that your government sees the future business model of the U.K. as being the tax haven of Europe. The government wants to introduce the lowest corporate tax rate among all industrialized countries.”

Of the Prime Minister four key principles:

  • Certainty and clarity
  • A stronger Britain
  • A fairer Britain
  • A truly global Britain

….none makes any sense.

The idea that her sudden bolt for the door will bring certainty is perhaps true, but only in the sense that it will bring economic chaos. That is certain. The idea that Britain itself will become ‘stronger’ by treating its constituent parts with utter contempt, or just preventing they don’t exist seems unlikely. The fantasy of a ‘a truly global Britain’ is predicated on a fantasy as stupid as re-floating Britannia and a complete misunderstanding of the nature of trade deals.

Today we see Britain re-made swept forward on a wave of English nationalism, barely concealed racism and economic fantasy. It will lead to constitutional chaos as the only means to defend ourselves against the coming travesty. We have two options, reach for the Buckfast, or organise, strategise and plan for a better future, because today the Prime Minister Nobody Elected is announcing a future that is dark as anything you’ve seen.

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Comments (23)

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  1. James Coleman says:

    Excellent stuff. Particularly liked:

    “after months of shambling vacuous nothingness, our Prime Minister will announce our True Path. It will be presented not as the obvious and only solution of a politician cornered by her own craven stupidity, but as the cunning ruse carved-out of many a late night with Liam Fox and Boris Johnson.”

  2. Hamish says:

    Doom, gloom and the End of the World ? I had hoped that Bella Caledonia would have a slightly more positive message to encourage us in the struggle.

    1. Well the positive message is its a call to arms and that tis leave us with no alternative but to enforce political sovereignty

      1. Sid says:

        A call to arms to a divided army will never succeed. I’m really saddened by the quality of leadership amongst the nationalist movement. Aren’t they aware that 35% of voters who voted to leave Europe voted SNP? How many voted YES in 2014, voted to leave Europe. Do they care or are they just interested in listening to their own thoughts.

  3. bringiton says:

    One of the main differences between the two EUs is that in the European one,it’s constituent parts have a say in the outcome of such decisions,in fact a veto in some cases whereas in England’s Union……..

  4. Ex Pat says:

    Agree with the sentiments, but where’s the author attribution?

    If you don’t know, and trust, the author, you have no idea that you are being fed some of the monstrous blizzard of UK MSM disinformation. And even then…

    Hope you are not going the route of that other anonymous writers’s ‘organ’, The Economist – the reason Noam Chomsky no longer reads it. That, and the fact that it often appears to be no more than a Reich-wing UK MSM disinformation outlet. Overly cautious? ‘Au contraire piston-puss’ (™ Car Talk Guys), OR You have been awake for the last sixteen years we hope!

    Noam Chomsky on ‘this (USUK Empire fascist-minded) organ’, The Economist –

    Keane Bhatt – Truthout – “What then is the role of The Economist, which one can’t read without seeing serious misrepresentations on a seemingly constant basis within its reporting? What role is it serving, and why is its reporting so different from that of, say, the Financial Times or the Wall Street Journal?”

    Noam Chomsky – “I used to read The Economist regularly, but haven’t done so for some time. One reason is what you indicate. Another is that they do not provide much basis for what they assert, not even the name of the writers, so at least one can have some judgment of credibility.”

    See comment ‘Fascist News’ to ‘This Is What Tyranny Looks Like’ by Carl Gibson, May 23, 2012 – ICH –


    1. Author update – no conspiracy

    2. Ex Pat says:

      Mike Small (Who he? Ed.) As long as he continues to beat the Tories – Conservative and Blairite – like the rabid diseased curs that they are.

      Substitute Blair, Camoron or May doing our (US) Imperial Master’s bidding and it might have been written today – (S)He was a Crook – Obituary of Richard Nixon, by Hunter S. Thompson, The Atlantic –


      Blairite lackeys of our (US) Imperial Master visit Glasgow – 10 on a 5 point scale for genius satire – RT, 2014 – Youtube –


  5. Tom Parkhill says:

    From the 2015 UKIP election manifesto.

    “As a minimum, we will seek continued access on
    free-trade terms to the EU’s single market”.

    Seems that the minimum we can hope for is now the maximum.

  6. tartanfever says:

    So basically, we don’t have enough experienced civil service staff required to do both the leave and the new trade agreement, (separate negotiations) so May has decided to forget the leave options and concentrate on the new trade issues.

    What will be certain, is that the UK trade team will be full of her ‘husband’- city hedge fund managers and bankers doing the utmost to get the best deal for themselves and their chums. London will be protected much the same as the car industry. Other industries may see some protection but the cost for this will be agriculture and fisheries.

    Scottish fisheries (and farmers) are just about to take a massive hit. You are going to be one of the ‘giveaways’ to protect the City of London and the finance industry.

  7. Willie says:

    What does all of this really have to do with the Scottish Electorate.

    Their views don’t count, the decision about their future is not their’s. Surely we should realise it’s time the sheep got back in their pen and realised who and what they are.

    And ditto the Electorate in NI.

    Or am I missing something?

  8. Banned says:

    Can anyone explain why it is in Scotland’s economic interests to separate the UK and join the EU?

    We export 4 times as much to the other countries in UK compared to the rest of the EU.

    As part of the UK, Scotland benefits from the Barnett Formula which permits higher public spending per capita than rUK and enables us to have an annual deficit of 9.5% of GDP without any adverse consequences. The EU Growth and Stability Pact limits the deficit to 3% and imposes severe austerity measures to bail out countries which fail to comply e.g. Greece and Portugal.

  9. florian albert says:

    Theresa May’s response yesterday was the, belated, logical response to the referendum result last year.

    This creates serious problems for Nicola Sturgeon and for supporters of independence. Scots have twice – in 2014 and 2016 – voted for the status quo. It looks as though Scottish voters will have to make a choice in the fairly near future; stay in the UK or leave it and join the EU.
    The choice will be between a close political an economic union which has lasted over 300 years and partial union involving over 25 other countries.
    I am fairly certain that Scottish voters will, if forced to choose, stick with the former.
    There are a few people on the left, Robin McAlpine for example, who have been clear sighted enough to see that Nicola Sturgeon has wasted the past two years. No serious attempt has been made to remedy the defects that led to defeat in the September 2014 vote.
    Bella Caledonia would do better to address this rather than resort to the tired formula of denunciation;
    Theresa May as a politician ‘cornered by her own craven stupidity’ and the ‘Prime Minister Nobody Elected’.

    1. Dear Florian, Bella has been and will be in the fore to address the challenges of winning referendum (as witnessed by there article published today). I am on the board of Common Weal and of the SIC, whom just he’d a significant conference in Glasgow. Were you there?

      PS Theresa May is a PM nobody elected.

      1. florian albert says:

        Your article, disappointingly, was mainly about the failings of Theresa May. I am far from the first to note the Scottish left’s tendency to devote a disproportionate amount of energy to denunciation.
        I was not at the recent conference in Glasgow. I made no reference to it.

        Theresa May became PM this year as Gordon Brown became PM in 2007 and as Nicola Sturgeon became FM in 2014 – by being elected leader of the majority party.
        Implying that there is something illegitimate about her position is plain silly.

        1. I made reference to the conference because it is one of a number of positive detailed policy initiatives I am involved in and we publish material from many sources – I could name 100s of them … look them up on the site.

          But, I make no mistake for denouncing the Conservatives dire politics which will, according to independent experts have a devastating impact on Scottish jobs and leave tens of thousands of people unemployed.

          1. florian albert says:

            The problem with the hundreds of ‘positive, detailed policy initiatives’ is that they have made next to no impact on the mass of voters.
            The 2014 referendum was fought, and lost, overwhelmingly on the SNP White Paper’s vision of an independent Scotland. This was reasonable; SNP referendum, SNP policies.
            Two years on, the left is still trying to come up with a policy on what currency an independent Scotland might use.
            To give another example, on schooling the left has almost nothing to say about the attainment gap nor about the disarray in schools created by the disastrous CfE.
            Sadly, Bella Caledonia sees Gaelic and Scots language as more of a priority. This approach just about guarantees that it will fail to make the breakthrough needed to have a significant impact on Scottish society.

          2. I’m not sure what your point is? That people shouldn’t explore and research policy? Is that your point?

  10. florian albert says:

    Bella Caledonia Editor

    What is my point ?

    It is that the left in Scotland, including Bella Caledonia, spends far too much time denouncing Trump/Brexit/May/Younameit.

    The hundreds of ‘positive, detailed policy initiatives’, insofar as they exist, are having next to no impact on mainstream politics.
    When the left tries to enter the mainstream, as RISE did in the 2016 election, it makes no impact.

    I would like to see the (social democratic) left make an impact in Scotland. At present, it is not happening.

    1. Maybe you should start a social democratic blog and promote those politics? RISE certainly was an electoral flop, but the Scottish left played a huge part in the Yes movement and was central to organising last saturdays events. I’m trying too imagine another political force in Scotland doing the same. It’s not really credible but good luck promoting your own political ideas.

    2. c rober says:

      The left for 20 odd years in Scotland is why it is where it is today – well insofar that the left had always meant working class Scottish Labour.

      However over those years the left moved towards NuLabour , towards middle class , and finds itself where now? And as a result the Nationalist went in to fill that vacuum , well as some may say even if only as a veneer….it was enough as long as it was thicker than SLABS faded one.

      Of course the selling of a nation , being in the British Labour party’s genes , McCrone , Project fear also played a part – which I feel is the reasoning why , to me at least , the RiSE movement failed.

      RiSE only offered more of the same sounding middle class offering themselves as working class socialists. Much as how the Greens arent as accepted as they should have been , especially when it offers a post oil economy and growth industry , and how the last proper socialist Labour men and Women left in Scotland will be rejected in the May council elections – sadly.

      As for bella denouncing global and European politics , it has to be done , its a web that would affect any indy Scotland – via trade , or warnings of things to come , ie populist narrative of the media and politician. So in effect perhaps the removal of blinkers , pro or anti indy , which leads to offering more than just the replacing of maisters.

      For the adoption of the mither toungue and gaelic on the site , its fine.

      Just like many here I use the vernacular in company , the proper when and where its needed , and both without embarrassment , other than for the snobs themselves as self loathers – but it still needs addressing that Gaelic needs a platform , and it wont be supplied without indy at the level it deserves…. some say currently it is still the ginger stepchild of the SNP.

      Scotland needs a voice if not many , its not supplied in the MSM that wishes to keep it as a tenant for the wealthy billionaire owners and millionaire politicians that enable it , nor in the parasitic drain of the licence fee southward and the propaganda machine that is the bbc northlands.

      Most folk wont read the likes of Commonweal , and the white papers , they want a simple answer , to “will an indy Scotland be better than the status qou – and in my lifetime not in 50 years”. In other words they want to know that from the starting blocks , when the gun goes off post yes , that it wold be running and not crawling.

      The very austerity and wealth shift we have seen since the financial crash is a catalyst to change , and at the same time a reason to fear change in the same electorate , independent media has no Westminster or wealthy to corrupt the maths or to feed the fear. Without Holyrood tackling the machine in round one then those lies will only get bigger in round two , and as they say will only be believed more.

      But you are right – theres more to discuss , white papers , the economic question – but its six degrees of fiscal separation , everything is relative depending on the campaigners reasoning , mandate , for wanting indy.

      1. Thanks. Its incomprehensible how the occasional promotion of content in our native tongues should prevent other content flourishing. Its just the normal expression of any culture celebrating and not being ashamed of its own languages.

      2. Alf Baird says:

        “Gaelic needs a platform , and it wont be supplied without indy”

        At least Gaelic language has an Act, a board, a place on CfE, a degree, and £50m+ public money a year to help teach and broadcast the language. By contrast the Scots language has nothing, zip, nada, and intentionally so, as our unionist maisters ken fineweel the power of language. Aye, if maist Scots kent thay haed thair ain langage, thay’d shuirly want thair ain kintra bak anaw, swith-lyke tae.

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