2007 - 2020

The Yes Vote for Scottish independence takes its biggest ever Lead

 

The headline “The Yes Vote for Scottish independence takes its biggest ever Lead” would surely be good news for supporters of Scottish independence?

No.

Follow this.

Colin Dunn explains: “Much justifiable concern at the apparent belief that higher Yes support will somehow force Johnson to change his mind about an S30. The opposite seems probable: the higher support goes the *less* likely he is to agree to that, as he won’t want to be seen as the last PM of the UK.

This has become mainstream thinking in some of the fringes of the Yes movement.

It’s a bit like Ian Murray’s notion that the more Scottish Labour are rejected by voters the more right they are.

So follow this stream of logic …

The primary obstacle to independence is the SNP.

Alex Salmond and Craig Murray have been the subject of Deep State conspiracy (which ‘state’ is unclear).

There are no circumstances by which the British government will EVER give a Section 30 Order.

Anyone who suggests otherwise is a traitor/Yoon.

There is no reason to persuade others to support independence.

Having a specific commitment to independence in the 2021 manifesto is worthless & useless.

ALL of the MPs are traitorous backstabbers *insert reason here*.

Therefore … any sign of increased support is actually a hindrance to the ‘movement.’

And yet polling tells us …

23% of those who voted No in 2014 are now Yes.

Nearly half of Labour voters back independence.

79% of voters under the age of 25 back independence.

30% of remaining Labour supporters back Indy (+ 10% don’t know).

Only 68% of 2014 No voters would do so again.

Only *17%* of those aged 18-24 oppose independence.

As of today’s performance by Ruth Davidson the Unionist Fallback Heroine is a deeply flawed lame-duck leader.

And the increasingly desperate signs of the Unionist rump remain with Stephen Daisley’s bizarre column about ‘The case for a new Act of Union’ which proposes:

  1. The UK is a unitary state in which sovereignty rests exclusively with the Crown-in-Parliament at Westminster.
  2. The convention that the UK parliament does not legislate in devolved areas without Holyrood’s permission should come to an end.
  3. The permanence of the Scottish parliament (one of the many acts of violence committed against the Union by Cameron) should also cease.
  4. The balance of powers between Holyrood and Westminster should be recalibrated and the principle adopted that any power not specifically devolved is reserved. Reserved matters should include elections, referendums and local government.
  5. Prohibit the expending of taxpayers’ money or parliamentary resources on reserved matters.

This is untenable and a sure sign of desperation and disarray.

The Times managed to shoehorn in a bad-headline into the news that “The SNP is on course for an unprecedented majority at Holyrood” with the “SNP support soars despite U-turn over exam results”.

This site has retained a critical eye and is deeply worried about key aspects of the SNP and Scottish Government’s policies – both micro and macro – and has spent the best half of a decade being attacked for being critical. We have – and are – deeply critical of education policy, of failure on environmental policy and more widely on the complete inability to create or structure the building blocks for independence in terms of currency, a National Bank, a national energy company and many of the other institutions that have been advocated by Commonweal (and others) for a very long time. This is all indefensible, and the corporate takeover that George Kerevan in his weekly economics columns and others have outlined in painful detail is all too real.

But – if you are absorbing the growing reality that – whether you like it or not – that Sturgeon’s caw canny approach during the pandemic has won over hordes of recalcitrant and unconvinced No voters – and still want to create another vehicle then it’s time to wake up. Politics is complex and movement building is difficult. My imagined process in which everyone agrees with my Left-Green analysis may not be what wins it.

None of the multiple ‘new parties’ seem credible in terms of strategy, funding, policies or clear-sighted politics, and none of the alternative routes forward seem to have ‘lift-off’ to make any discernible impact.

There are multiple ways that the movement can add to and disrupt politics – including radicalising the AUOB rallies, creating mass civil disobedience and NVDA – and there are multiple ways in which the SNP at Westminster can and should cause mayhem. The binary is not between blind-faith in the SNP and kookiedom. It is finding a path forward when EVERY indicator is that we are on the brink of a breakthrough.

Many of our apparent differences within the movement are resolvable and many of the Unionists problems are chronic and institutional.

Have faith in each other, be positive, be united in diversity, broaden and radicalise the movement, look to new ways of protest that engage people and keep the heid – our time will come.

Take heart from the shifts that are happening as Britain struggles through multiple crises and don’t destroy the opportunity that presents itself. This DOESN’T mean unquestioning of the SNP, it DOESN’T mean being an uncritical ally but it DOES mean going with the good energy and the good outcomes that are unraveling before us. The lockdown has taken its toll on all of us, but as we tentatively recover we can find new ways to deepen and widen the movement and move towards an invincible and unstoppable majority for radical change.

 

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  1. Muiris says:

    In a phrase ‘Tiochfaidh ár lá’?

    1. Drew Morrison says:

      I hope so Muiris….

  2. SleepingDog says:

    I will not restate my caveats about polls here, but I do think the analysis presented here is essentially correct. The SNP is the only mass political party in Scotland which would implode if it missed an Independence open goal (hence it cannot afford to), and I agree that circumstances are likely to provide one. If there was a reasonable, forward-looking, ethical argument in favour of the Union, I think I would have encountered it by now.

  3. Doug Daniel says:

    It’s quite weird, isn’t it?

    Imagine if, in 2011, independence supporters had gone around telling people “that line in the SNP’s manifesto about getting a referendum is rubbish! The UK Government won’t give us a referendum!” I don’t remember people being so concerned with how a referendum would be held before then – folk just got on with getting us in the position to have one in the first place. If we’d spent the decade since it became SNP policy fighting over how it would be held, we’d never have gotten it at all.

    There’s nothing in the UK’s uncodified constitution that compels them to give us a section 30 order, but that’s no different to the situation last time. Folk say they only granted the s30 order in 2012 because they were sure they were going to win, but that’s far too simplistic. It explains the timing, but not the act itself. You don’t fight battles you don’t need to fight, even if you’re sure you’ll win. They granted the s30 when they were sure they would win it because they assumed the fallout would prevent them having to grant one when they were sure of losing. Clearly, they felt they had to nip independence in the bud. That’s inconsistent with apparently being able to say “no” forever, which would mean every single person in Scotland could vote SNP and they’d just keep sticking two fingers up at us with impunity.

    More and more people on the unionist side are conceding that a majority for the SNP will mean a second referendum. At this rate, the only people saying otherwise will be people on the independence side. How on earth did we get into a position where some independence supporters have more faith in Boris Johnson’s “just say no” message than an arch-Tory like Andrew Mitchell? (https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/av/uk-politics-50854791) Even Theresa May’s “now is not the time” mantra conceded it was a matter of when, not if. The official lines from Tory HQ today say there’ll be no referendum, but their behaviour says otherwise. Why do they need to “fight for the union” if they’re 100% in charge of whether another referendum happens or not? Why the panicky replacement of Jackson Carlaw? None of it makes sense if they can truly resist the political pressure forever.

    The thought of another SNP majority – bigger than in 2011 even – has got them in meltdown a year before the election. They couldn’t make the situation more obvious unless they started wearing t-shirts saying “SNP majority = IndyRef2”.

    1. SleepingDog says:

      @Doug Daniel, I think your reasoning is sound. If there was the slightest justification for complacency, I am sure Boris Johnson would have gratefully fallen back upon it.

      1. Fultonius says:

        I’m not sure if it’s the giant elephant in the corner that no one shall talk about, or if I’ve just missed some critical analysis on why it’s not the right move, but why can the SNP not just put the cards on the table in May 2021 and make it a single issue election? Vote SNP majority and we’ll start the transition period to leaving the UK. We are a sovereign people, with a sovereign parliament.

        Or is this the big secret that Nicola is trying to keep at bay?

        1. Arboreal Agenda says:

          It strikes me as the most obvious and also honest thing to do. If successful, the mandate for independence would be incontrovertible. The only reason for not doing it is perhaps the fear that it would backfire and lose significant votes but that would have to happen in a very major way for the mandate to not be clear.

        2. Doug Daniel says:

          The problem with trying to use an election as a make-do plebiscite is you can win a majority of seats on a minority of votes. 45% was enough for the SNP to get a majority in 2011, but it wasn’t enough to win independence in 2014. That matters. It would look like we were trying to lower the bar to make it easier to win, and that’s how you lose people’s trust. It’s also just not as neat as a referendum, since elections are never single-issue. Although polls suggest we’ve entered “sustained majority for independence” territory, we’re not yet at the point where a majority of people think it’s the single overriding issue that would allow them to put previous party loyalties aside in an election – not least the third of Labour voters who support independence but not enough to stop them voting for a vehemently unionist party.

          There’s a time where it becomes politically valid to pursue that route, but we’re not there yet. You’d have to have seen an SNP majority in the election leading to a final Section 30 order request, that request being denied, the Scottish Parliament holding a referendum anyway, that referendum returning a majority for independence, and that majority being ignored by the UK Government. At that point, the public says “fair dos, you’ve genuinely exhausted every other route.”

          It’s perhaps worth noting that even though the SNP only adopted the current referendum policy at a National Council meeting in 2000, the pre-Holyrood policy – that a majority of SNP MPs in Scotland should automatically lead to independence negotiations – still relied on a final confirmatory referendum to seal the deal, much like the 1978 devolution referendum was held after much time had been spent negotiating the devolved assembly. So when folk say SNP policy used to be “majority of MPs = independence”, it’s not entirely accurate, or at least it’s far more out-of-date than they probably realise.

          1. Fiona Sinclair says:

            The referendum for the Scottish Assembly was in 1979 – the Act to prepare for this was in 1978. I imagine you weren’t around then – but some of us were. The lessons from that are still relevant today, given that it took another 20 years to create a Scottish parliament, but only after the de-industrialisation of Scotland, bargain basement sale of state assets under the privatisation of nationalised industry and services, mass unemployment, and the squandering of much of North Sea Oil. It is most probable that the huge economic and social dislocation dealt to Scotland from all of this convinced many Scots that independence was a non-starter. Don’t imagine that the next few years are going to aid the public’s perception of the viability of independence – the `message` from the SNP needs to be much more comprehensive than one of `competent` management of Scottish governance.

    2. Justin Kenrick says:

      Just flagging Doug’s excellent comment:

      “Why do they need to “fight for the union” if they’re 100% in charge of whether another referendum happens or not? Why the panicky replacement of Jackson Carlaw? None of it makes sense if they can truly resist the political pressure forever.”

      . . . and excellent article Mike

    3. John Bargan says:

      The brainlessly complacent hubris of your comment couldn’t be a better summary of why people are hacked off with the SNP.

      Cameron granted a Section 30 in 2011 because he was certain he’d win easily and put the whole thing to bed for decades.

      (He held the EU referendum for partly the same reason, and because UKIP actually posed a perceived threat to his being able to win an election.)

      Johnson is pretty certain he’d lose, so he’ll never concede one. And the only threat to his power is if he DOES concede one, because it would enrage his own voters. The SNP pose no threat to him at all. They already hold the vast bulk of seats in Scotland and it hasn’t stopped him getting a big majority.

      We didn’t need a Plan B in 2011, because our opponents were as complacent then as you are now. They won’t make that mistake twice.

      1. Doug Daniel says:

        Maybe avoid throwing insults at folk when your own analysis is overly simplistic and contradicts itself.

        So the EU referendum was about heading off the electoral threat from UKIP, yes. But what electoral threat did the SNP pose? The Tories had a single MP in Scotland. Electorally-speaking, they had nothing to lose from continuing to ignore Scotland – in fact, it would make more sense for them to keep ignoring us, in the hope that Labour would start losing seats to the SNP, as happened in the 70s over devolution.

        The “electoral threat” analysis would work if it was a Labour government that had been in power. It doesn’t work for a Tory government.

        You also fail to explain why Johnson is suddenly panicking when the SNP, in your own words, “pose no threat to him at all”.

        Try again, and this time actually engage with the points in the comment you’re replying to, rather than simply regurgitating simplistic arguments that have already been dealt with.

      2. Great to have you commenting “John”

    4. Melissa Murray says:

      Why on earth would you compare 2011 to 2021? We live in not just a completely different UK, but a totally different world. It’s nonsense to say it’s the same circumstances.

      How many times has the Scottish Government asked for Section 30 Order since 2014? I believe it has been three times. How many times has it been refused? Yep, every time. So what would make anyone believe that if the SNP just WIN ONE MORE election (they have won the last 6 since 2014), this time the UK Tories will definitely grant permission. It’s silly and it takes us no closer to independence.

      So what any clever strategist would then do, is look at alternatives to Plan A which is clearly not working.

      I am heartened by the People’s Court Case coming up. They have raised nearly £100k of the £155k they need to pursue the case. Think they will easily reach their goal in the next 3 weeks. I am happy there are many people in the indy movement willing to look at alternatives to get us to our goal.

      Not sure berating those who no longer want to keep hitting the same brick wall is exactly a smart strategy. But certain folk in our indy group have a very much, my way or the highway type attitude.

      “Insanity- doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” (Albert Einstein)

      1. SleepingDog says:

        @Melissa Murray, apart from being a dubious appeal to authority, where is your evidence that Albert Einstein ever made such an odd statement about insanity? I would never had been able to watch many of my (entirely legitimate) video discs if I had not tried the same thing again and again. I always remember the quote from the Civilization spin-off Alpha Centauri, one of the most intelligent game designs in my playing history:
        “‘Abort, Retry, Fail?’ was the phrase some wormdog scrawled next to the door of the Edit Universe project room. And when the new dataspinners started working, fabricating their worlds on the huge organic comp systems, we’d remind them: if you see this message, always choose ‘Retry.’
        “Bad’l Ron, Wakener, Morgan Polysoft
        “Accompanies the Matter Editation technology”
        https://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Sid_Meier%27s_Alpha_Centauri
        It’s a reminder that life keeps trying, a bit like that mythical but realistic cave spider. Here there is a random element. So rolling dice should not mean you expect the same results every time.

        What your logic implies is that if you don’t get what you want by voting for the same party, give up. Even some anarchists advocate voting. It’s not insanity, although it could be stubbornness. The world changes all the time, mostly in ways we cannot perceive. Modern complexity theory is interested in the tipping points between one state and another which enable phase shifts (like if you are trying to create steam, keep boiling water seems not to deliver results for a time and then: bubbles!). In fact, we may have already reached the desired tipping point through our actions without being able to initially perceive it, like creating a hairline crack in a block of ice with a series of blows. And of course it is possible to repeat one action while changing others, which is parallelism, and in politics you have pluralism and the complex interchange between adaptive agents in a system, which may be influenced by other political systems, like the Arab Spring.

        Actually, a clever strategist might do the same thing for quite a while to ‘fix’ their opponent and draw their attention, whilst manoeuvring around (this is a feature of ancient combined-arms tactics). Or the old ‘lull into a false sense of security’. And it might be that you are demonstrating a commitment to restraint and fairness, rather than allow a vicious spiral into degraded politics, dirty tricks or violence, which then in itself wins more support in the long run.

        Finally, if you opponent has an Achilles heel, it might just be worth firing arrows at it until you hit, never mind how many times you miss. Although I am talking metaphorically, not advocating armed conflict.

        1. Melissa Murray says:

          No Sleeping Dog, that is not what I was saying at all. And trying to equate something Einstein said (I have no reason to believe he never said that quote) with rebooting a computer via a dodgy disc seems simplistic and irrelevant.

          I was merely pointing out that continuing to ask for a Section 30 Order which is never going to be granted by the UK Government (either under the Tories or Labour) is pointless and won’t get us any closer to achieving independence. This is is why I am happy the Peoples Court Case is near it’s goal of £155k. (It is now over £105k, with 20 days still to go). You might notice the folk in the SNP who are most against this case are the ones who think if you keep asking Westminster the same question over and over again, eventually the UK Gov. will concede. That’s naive in the extreme (I am being kind here).

          Politics is an ugly game at times. There is zero chance that WM is going to give up Scotland without a very big fight (let’s face it they can’t afford to, and with hard Brexit looming that is even more of an issue). We will need to have the strongest opposition to that, not people who feebly keep going to them with their begging bowl.
          “Please sir, can I have some more.”

  4. Drew Morrison says:

    “going with the good energy and the good outcomes that are unraveling before us.”

    Yes, that is all that really matters at this time. But what the hell does organisations like Commonweal have to do with anything and what they think of NS and the SNP? McAlpine’s recent attacks on NS and her Government can only be found in the awful Daily Express and the Scotsman. What good is that to the Indy movement? Commonweal will not secure Independence for Scotland and that is the fact of the matter. I’ll stick with the lifelong campaigner i.e. NS not elitists (or rather they would like to be). We don’t need no ex-labour left wing politics or doctrine. We should be leaving all that rubbish behind….we followed it long enough and where did it get us? Let’s secure Indy and build something new as the Man said ” We do not want either Greek or Roman Models if we are but just & true to our own Imaginations,”

    1. Blair says:

      Yes, we need to create something new but we also need to ensure everyone gets included. We need things to work for all the people living in Scotland and we need to have open doors to incorporate others whom we are to trade etc. with the rest of the world.
      The United Kingdom has failed us but perhaps we could put our faith in predicted coming Kingdom as written in to the religious scripture of the Bible. Scotland could be the natuon that makes the world a better & safer place to live.

  5. Alasdair Macdonald says:

    Hear! Hear!

  6. Andrew says:

    Why do we keep painting ourselves into a corner by insisting we must go down the referendum route to independence? Are there any other countries which have won independence after a referendum? Why are we not exploring the Treaty of Union route? It was an international treaty between two sovereign nations so should surely be governed by international rules for such treaties. As I understand international law, if one party to such a treaty breaks it the other signatory is released from staying in it. There should be little difficulty in proving breaches have taken place.

    1. Lorna Campbell says:

      Indeed, Andrew. You have to start asking yourself WHY so many insist on this pre independence route when the facts are as follows: a) one has never been won in the mature democracies in recent years; b) there is no domestic or international legal requirement for one. It is a form of mass delusion, a kind of mythology that has taken over the Scottish psyche and can’t be forced out again. It is a form of mass insanity that owes much to the Stockholm Syndrome phenomenon. What is worse, it is somehow predicated on the assumption that the Scottish Unionists and their allies, the rUK NO voters will roll over if we win a pre independence referendum. I really believe we are going to hell in a handcart and certainly not towards any kind of independence in the near future with that attitude.

      2021 will just be another useless mandate to do what? Strut up and down the streets of Scotland’s towns and cities and declare that Johnson can’t turn us down this time, even if he turned us down the last time and will keep on turning us down? Aye, right! That’ll be it. I can almost guarantee that, if we won this phantom referendum, the Scottish Unionists and rUK NO voters would immediately call on Johnson to come north to put us in our place. There is only one way to win our independence, and it has two options: 1) we take our case against the UK’s breaching of the Treaty to the UN and call on the UN to put it to adjudication to the International Court of Justice (because the polls’ majorities give us that right, as does the UN Charter itself; b) we win a convincing victory in 2021 and take our case to the international community. In both cases, we would be calling on international law to play its part. Can you see the Scottish government doing either of these things? No, neither can I.

      They refuse to use the tools they have been given and they will eventually fall through inactivity as new parties arise, or they will lead us down a cul-de-sac of broken promises. Unless we are willing to show the requisite courage and imagination needed to win our independence, unless we are willing to call a spade a bloody great shovel and face down the NO voters who are breaching international law and legislation to which the UKG is a signatory, we will have to leave independence to a future generation, and it will be impossible by then to win it other than by strife. The real irony is that weak, vacillating leaders have always caused more misery in the long run for their fellow human beings than any powerful autocrat: the last Tsar of All the Russias and Neville Chamberlain are two who spring to mind, but there have been many others. I am not advocating autocracy; I am a democrat. But, had Nicholas II not shilly-shallied, but formed a constitutional monarchy, millions would have been spared, including he and his family; had Neville Chamberlain moved well before Czechoslovakia and Poland fell, it is likely that millions would have been saved, including over six million Jewish people, Gypsies and Slavs. People who think they have you on the ropes always take advantage. Always.

      Sometimes, you need to have the courage to ‘fight back’, and sometimes, you need to’ stand your ground but not fight back’. The mark of a brilliant leader is knowing when to do the one and not the other. The SG is doing neither, just vacillating to no conclusion. It will not end well for all you optimists. It never does in these circumstances. And, of course, events always, but always intervene, too. You won’t be told, though, and you will take down the rest of us with you.

      1. I see you fulfill all of the checklist I outline Lorna.

        Good luck taking “our case to the UN”.

        1. Lorna Campbell says:

          “…The lockdown has taken its toll on all of us, but as we tentatively recover we can find new ways to deepen and widen the movement and move towards an invincible and unstoppable majority for radical change….”

          Yes, as happened in France, America, Russia…? let’s think about those revolutions? Weren’t people treated very badly and didn’t they react? Or did they just sit around waiting for change to come to them? What about more recent times? Hmmm…the Balkan States? Slovenia? Each broke away from an overbearing and bullying neighbour. Did they do it on 53%? No, I think they were all closer to 90%, and theirs were post independence referendums. Each had minority populations of Russians, in th case of the Baltic States and Serbias, in the case of Slovenia. Did their minorities vote NO at around 75% of their number? No, they voted overwhelmingly for independence because they understood on which side their bread was buttered, and they didn’t call for help from either Russia or Serbia respectively. Many of our rUK residents would almost certainly demand that England-as-the-UK interfere if they thought their comfy gaff was being threatened by independence, but you go on believing the fairy tales.

          Oh, the SG won’t be taking our case to the UN, Ed. Thought I’d kind of made that clear? Just peripheral stuff that matters to half a dozen people, and takes away the rights of the majority, like the GRA reform, gets an outing at the UN, didn’t you know? Minorities are the new majorities for the SNP ‘wokerti’. Hasn’t it dawned on anyone yet that all those who have ‘turned’ appear to have done so because of Brexit, mainly. So, no rejoining the EU, what are the chances of a referendum win – if we ever get that far, that is? Not one, single person in The National’s ‘From NO to YES’ mentioned Scotland’s right to her independence under the UN Charter or the Treaty, just Brexit. Over a million voted for Brexit, in Scotland, in 2016. Have they all gone away? Will they not want a referendum on whether Scotland, as opposed to the UK, stays in the EU – or is it rejoins now, because Brexit is kind of past, isn’t it? Then, of course, there’s the 400,000-500,000 required to move from NO to YES to carry the YES vote to a respectable 55% second time around. If I’m wrong, and there’s a referendum in sight within five years of 2021, and I’m still around, I’ll come on here and apologize profusely.

          1. Sorry, Lorna, are you comparing Scottish independence to the Russian Revolution? I’m confused.

      2. Fiona MacLeod says:

        Rarely have I read a comment with which I so fully concur!

  7. Jim Bennett says:

    Hi Mike,
    This is (as ever) a good article. Thank you. I disagree with bits and pieces (I think you’re a bit harsh on what you might term the indie conspiracy theorists) but the central arguement rings true.
    I am increasingly exasperated my the SNP’S managerialism and timidity but like you, my greenie/leftiness could well be a minority sport.
    The tension for me is getting g what we can achieve now through the Scottish Parliament and also ensuring a broad enough base to win independence. For me, referendum timings etc aren’t the issue, actually winning the thing is. To do that, we still need to answer unanswered questions from the last campaign.
    Good work. Keep it up!

  8. RICHARD ANDERSON says:

    I live in a navy town surrounded byTory voters. Try as I might, I was unable to get them to contemplate voting Yes last time. It wasn’t for the want of trying. Yet, all it has taken to open them up to independence has been Boris, Brexit and the Pandemic. I can’t say they are wholly there yet but, independently, neighbours (plural) have volunteered how much they think NS is doing a good job trying to keep us safe. Normally they would spit after mentioning her name.
    It’s the shift from stark/ blind opposition to respecting her contribution that is, in my view, significant. No canvassing, no bombarding with information, no manufactured opportunity to talk through the merits of independence. The fact is, I don’t need persuaded. If support for indy is rising it’s because people are living with that possibility now through watching her daily and not disliking it.

    1. Lorna Campbell says:

      And when and if the pandemic lifts, Richard…? Haven’t you clocked the ‘war’ footing of the Unionists? Or should we remain in a state of suspended animation, fearful of Covid, but grateful to the FM for her competence in the domestic arena, until all your neighbours are convinced of the notion that international prevails and that they are behaving illegally and like colonists?

  9. Claire McGinlay says:

    Helps me discuss with my ‘Not sure friends.

  10. Douglas Wilson says:

    Glad to hear we are all just unduly worried and that Mike Small and his SNP pals have everything under control – phew! – including the future actions of Boris Johnson no less!

    Let me know the referendum date please when Boris has agreed to it, and I’ll be there to do my bit…

    In the meantime, I’ll be retiring to the games-room to partake in some leisure activities more conducive to mental well-being than watching this all unravel, which is kind of not unlike watching a very large iceberg melting….

    PS: Note to C Leckie and G.Kerevan . There is a school of thought in Spain that the Catalans lost because they had too many marches, with too many people, too many times. Marches alienate people!!!. You can’t to get to work or keep an appointment or just go about your business cause the streets are packed with marchers. . Marches are not an answer to anything of themselves!!!!

    And if Nicola Sturgeon goes on one, she runs the risk of being caught on camera with someone she would rather not be associated with, or under some incendiary banner. So, she is wise to steer clear…

    1. Fiona MacLeod says:

      To be honest, Nicola has already been “caught on camera” with some particularly unsavoury characters as it is.

  11. Paddy Farrington says:

    The SNP’s welcome U-turn on exam results does not fit the narrative that the SNP is hibebound by managerialism. On the contrary, this was a bold political move, which puts school children first and recognises the need to take action to address the social and class inequalities inherent in the existing system. The contrast with the approach taken elsewhere in the UK is striking. This is exactly the kind of radicalism we need to build a broad popular alliance for independence.

  12. Elaine Fraser says:

    “go with the good energy and good outcomes unravelling before us …..”

    My how we laughed …..the women and girls of Scotland ..yes indeed good outcomes all round ..nothing to see here folks its all good.

  13. Lorna Campbell says:

    I’m comparing change, Ed. For change to be effective, you have to do something to make it effective. But there is good change and there is bad change. Good change would be for the SNP SG to do what we elected it to do and take us to independence ASAP because the country will suffer if they don’t. I don’t care what argument is used to say that many people who vote SNP will not vote for independence, because independence is the SNP’s core policy and they have no right whatsoever to expect to reap the rewards of the SNP’s domestic success whilst being opposed to independence. People like this deserve a good, hefty boot up the rone pipe. Utter me-ism and selfishness ruled in 2014, and it appears that it continues to rule, and some are happy for that to continue.

    Ditch independence, and the SNP ceases to exist. It becomes something else entirely whilst still using the votes of members and supporters to sustain its rule. Make it plain in the Manifesto that a win for the SNP means independence within two years maximum and no one will be in any doubt that the SNP is going to honour its raison d’être. Then, there’s bad change. The kind of change that takes away long-established and desperately-needed sex-based rights in order to hand them to a vanishingly small minority who shout louder than everyone else put together, or the right to freedom of speech being curtailed because someone thinks that you might have said or done something that shows intent to offend his or her sensibilities. That our FM would Address the UN on the issue of GRA reform but not on our fundamental right to independence should be sounding alarm bells, even for you, Mike.

    You can be all cool and ‘woke’ until you’re sussed, and I’d say the lot squatting in Holyrood have been sussed. Oh, and if you don’t believe that independence supporters are being got at or that the British State is not already interfering in, naive just doesn’t cover it.

    1. Well comparing distinct political events does actually require them to be comparable – or you risk looking like you think that these events and processes are very similar, which they clearly are not.

      People in revolutionary France or Russia did not have the vote and were not offered referenda. This is why the “lets go to the UN’ that you mention doesn’t really work. There’s a sort of desultory logic to all of this but now seems enrhsined with a small majority of people – relentless nihilism and conspiracy coupled with wild fantasies about ways forward none of with stand up t the briefest scrutiny.

      1. Lorna Campbell says:

        Of course people in revolutionary France didn’t have the vote. We have the vote, but a fat lot of good it does us if colonialists and British supremacists sabotage it against the tenets of international law and you do zilch about that. I was comparing change and how to achieve it, as I said, not particular events that have to be exact in circumstances, as I’m sure you knew, anyway. I am not a nihilist: I believe in democracy; in the rule of law; and in common human decency. I saw precious little of that in 2014, except from the YES side, but believe what you like. I spoke to Quebecois who thought they had won second time around. I am not a conspiracy theorist either, and I’d like to bet that, in years to come, we will discover that all kinds of nefarious practices were being perpetrated against us. The Quebecois warned that our UK government had adopted some of the worst practices of the Canadian government against Quebec independence. Oh, yes, dirty deeds were the order of the day in Quebec, as they were in Catalunya, as they are in Scotland. That’s the point of double agents and infiltrators: you don’t find out until it’s too late. Ask Gerry Adams and Arthur Scargill. I cannot believe sometimes how naive so many Scots are about independence. Do any of you actually understand what we are up against? When I say they will do absolutely anything to stop it, please believe me because I have spent a great deal of my time in researching the British State ways doing things when it comes to those they oppose. Of course we can take the International route. Why would we not? Are you another, Ed, who believes that the Scots are uniquely unable to do certain things that every other nation on the planet can do? You are going to be in for a severe shock in that case if and when we ever do get independence…in about the next millennium…when we start negotiations with England-as-the-UK. They are not so stupid as to think that the Treaty is worthless. They know it is worth its weight in political gold if they cn only persuade us that it is worthless. It’s just the Scots who always shoot themselves in the foot and who grab defeat from the jaws of victory. Dear Lord, what a country!

        1. SleepingDog says:

          @Lorna Campbell, there are risks in “nefarious practices”. Colonial crimes have not gone away, and there is interest in developments in European coming-to-terms in Germany (Namibia has rejected their genocide ‘reparations’), Belgium (royal genocide in Congo) and Netherlands (where the British helped bloodily restore their far-east empire with the help of re-armed Japanese after WW2). But often it is the cover-up that seizes the imagination of the public. After Watergate, the executive totters. State establishments are more resilient than single administrations, but they are threatened by the types of disclosures of continuous wrongdoing, secrecy and lying to the public that might at any point appear on Wikileaks.

          My view is that the members of the British establishment tasked with minding the secrecy pipeline (some secrets will inevitably emerge, best to exert some control) believe that if their past crimes, blunders, vices and cover-ups were publicly known (without sufficient preparation), the state would fall. We can see where a lot of current propaganda is directed. The problem for them is that they have infrequently had to defend the Union (or the British Empire, or its components) so vigorously in modern times, and such defence of the inherently indefensible draws unwelcome attention to the very things it wishes to remain obscured. The days of European empires sticking to a common denial of wrongs appears to be coming to an end. There could be an enormous international price to pay for last-to-‘fess up (worst/least repentant offender gets put on trial, often).

          So good-quality journalism, citizen (I know we’re officially only subjects, but we don’t need to act like one) activism, democratic upskilling, informed and questioning public debate, and the kind of research you mention will all heap on pressure. There are a lot of little laws, traditions, customs, taboos and other arrangements that British imperials have fought tooth-and-nail to add or preserve: pressuring for each and every irrationality and injustice to be corrected increases the chances of one of the rivets in the ship of state popping, and we need to be there to catch the leaks.

  14. James Mills says:

    Excellent summation of the position today , Mike .

    Was it Napoleon who said ”Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake ” ? Well , the Westminster Unionists have bought a bumber bag of mistakes and are busily dropping them all over the place .
    They probably bought them from the same people who sold them the NHS masks that were complete shit !

  15. Petr rowland says:

    If the majority of the Scottish people want independence because they have been goaded into it by the SNP, then so be it, but if they were all told the truth about the real cost and what the financial shortfall from Westminster would be then they may think again.
    Perhaps when jobs are lost when we re-locate the navy back to Portsmouth, and move other enterprises that help bolster up the local economy’s they may think again or move to England where they will be better off, who will the SNP boss around then?

    1. Lorna Campbell says:

      Are you threatening us with economic oblivion in the event of independence, Petr. We were threatened with economic oblivion if we didn’t join the Union. We have been threatened with economic oblivion if we didn’t support Brexit. You are like some petulant former partner who threatens his missus that she can’t live without him and that she will sink financially if she leaves him. Sometimes, Petr, the emotional blackmail and constant wearing down is worse than the reality of actually leaving. I have no doubt that there is a case for the Union, but, thus far, no one has been able to make it. You certainly haven’t. A bit of advice: you won’t make it by telling us we are s***e; that you are going to relocate everything to England. It might have escaped your notice, too, that Scotland had an excellent navy pre Union, even a merchant navy. We are an enterprising people, too. Our greatest weakness lies with the people who call themselves Scots, you know, the Vichy types, who are always too willing to sell us out to the highest bidder. For some reason, Scotland has always had more than her fair share of such people.

      1. Wul says:

        Petr: “…but if they [Scots} were all told the truth about the real cost and what the financial shortfall from Westminster would be then they may think again [about independence]”.

        Petr: I would dearly love to see this “real truth” about the “cost” to Scotland of becoming a fully self-governing nation. That would indeed be an interesting balance sheet. Can you enlighten us now?

        Can you give examples of other previously independent nations that England (and then the UK) benevolently funded at a financial loss to themselves? Surely Scotland can’t be the uniquely lucky recipient of this generous largess?

  16. Douglas Wilson says:

    It is clear from the comments of Doug Daniels, who is in the SNP, and has been a reliable commentator on Scottish indie on these boards over the years, that the SNP does in fact have a strategy for securing a second legal and fully binding referendum from London, a very slow route to independence, but a route all the same…

    It seems also clear to me that what the SNP want is a rerun of the 2014 referendum, instead of a referendum specifically tied to the question of EU membership which any European democrat would have supported.

    If you have two sovereign nations in a union, and the bigger one votes to leave the EU and the smaller one votes to stay, by any democratic principle you must put the question back to the smaller nation so its voters can decide which takes priority, the Union of 1707 or the Union of the 27 given both are no longer compatible.

    That referendum ought to have been called by now, with the full agreement of London, Brussels and Edinburgh, as a matter of democratic principle and promptly too…That it hasn’t been speaks very badly of the democratic credentials of the SNP, the Tories and the EU itself…

    When we leave the EU at the end of this year, what will take place is the biggest single stripping of rights of the citizens of a European nation since WWII against their will. There is no precedent for it in the modern era.

    A sovereign country whose citizens have been paying into the EU budget for 50 years and enjoy all of the rights of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union will have those rights taken away without their consent and against their expressed will.

    Put as starkly as that, we can maybe see Brexit for what it is: an act of violence against the citizens of Scotland and Scottish democracy, because taking something from somebody without their consent can only be considered an act of violence.

    The SNP have missed this fundamental point and gotten bogged down in the technicalities of the matter….

    I have little or no trust in them, sorry…

    1. Lorna Campbell says:

      Well said, Douglas. I think, if we were ever to get a referendum, and if there was a sniff of that referendum being tied to the EU, the one million + Brexiteers in Scotland would emerge and make things very difficult. That was one of the points I made. I, too, think that the SNP strategy is to wear down London until we are granted a S30 Order in about a hundred years or so, if we’re lucky. The problem with having a strategy that takes no account of potential intervening events or that your opponent might actually outmanoeuvre you and envelope you in a pincer movement, as Westminster appears to be doing right now, is that it could fail, and, therefore, you will need to have a second and third and fourth strategy in play… And why you would sneer at a Treaty that could save your bacon big time is such folly as to be a dereliction of sanity.

      1. … sorry – just trying to follow this – are you two both suggesting that there should be two referendums – one first on membership of the EU – then one on Scottish independence? I thought you didnt want a referendum and were going to just ‘go to the UN’?

        1. Douglas Wilson says:

          Bella, please pay me the courtesy of not lumping me in with the views of another poster? It’s perfectly clear what I am saying from my post and it has nothing to do with the UN.

          I have to say Bella that I don’t like your tone very much. You sound like Campbell over at Wings, just with a different agenda, ie, that you are right and anybody who disagree with you is an idiot or on the spectrum.

          It’s a pity Mike you have gone from trying to set up a new political party in the form of RISE to becoming a Nicola fan boy in just five years….

          1. I asked you a question Douglas, that is all.

            As for tone …

          2. Douglas Wilson says:

            I believe that a referendum ought to have been held in the weeks immediately after the withdrawal agreement was signed off on and before the trade negotiations commenced and most importantly while we are still in the EU.

            Sturgeon did ask for one to be fair, but was rebuffed all too easily and then stepped back from the full scale showdown with London which eventually will come, sooner or later in my opinion. I suppose it depends just how mad and wicked you think this Tory govt is. I think we have never had anything as mad and wicked before, I don’t see Johnson ever playing ball…

            Do people in Scotland know just how much their fundamental rights are bound up with EU membership? Are they aware that the final court of appeal is European justice and that from next year it will be English justice?

            The other day, Spain’s request to extradite one of the Catalan politicians (Lluis Puig) in exile in Belgium was turned down on procedural grounds, because the Belgian court found that Puig’s rights to a fair and impartial trial as per Article 3 of The Charter of Fundamental Rights of the EU could not be guaranteed if he was tried by the Spanish Supreme Court…

            It’s a good example of how important our fundamental rights are bound up with EU membership….

        2. Lorna Campbell says:

          I don’t want any more referendums on the constitutional issue, Ed. What I said was that the million and more Brexiteers, if a second indy ref is not based on rejoining the EU (we cannot stay ‘joined’ now because we allowed the big neighbour next door to take us out) may well not vote for Scottish independence precisely because it is Brexit that rocks their boat and independence not so much. Many of those Brexiteers in Scotland were NO voters, as well (the colonialist/English/British suprmacists) and, of those who were NO voters but who do not like Brexit, if there is no rejoining the EU immediately (i.e. if independence and rejoining that EU are not linked) they, too, might decide to vote NO again. This is what I have always said about the NO vote – no one ever really bothered to evaluate it and analyze it properly for the implications it held. I believe that all those colonialists and British/English supremacists will vote NO again, as may many of the NO voting anti Brexiteers because Scottish independence is of no real importance to them except as a stepping stone. They have no fundamental belief in the justice of Scotland’s perfectly legitimate claim to independence on its own merit because they are colonialists and English/British supremacists or because independence is not linked to the EU. Does that clear it up for you? I agree with much of what Douglas has said, but we differ.

    2. Wul says:

      Douglas: “If you have two sovereign nations in a union, and the bigger one votes to leave the EU and the smaller one votes to stay, by any democratic principle you must put the question back to the smaller nation so its voters can decide which takes priority,..”

      The problem with this logic is that Scottish people voted, in September 2014, to remain as UK subjects. As much as I detest this outcome, if you vote to be in the UK in 2014, then surely your 2016 EU referendum vote was cast as a UK subject?

      Perhaps you take the view that the Scottish people’s EU referendum vote was cast as a partner nation in the UK Treaty of Union?

      I’m interested in this because it seems to be a grey area that both “sides” use to justify their arguments.

      1. Douglas Wilson says:

        The Scottish people voted to remain in the UK after they were threatened, bullied and lied to by the government of Spain, the UK government and the president of the EU Commission, Barroso, now working for Goldman Sachs…

        We were told that it was “all but impossible” for an independent Scotland to join the EU, despite Scotland being a net contributor to EU budgets, and Spain and Portugal being net recipients….

        The citizens of Spain and Portugal have never been asked to pay a penny to finance the EU, the citizens of Scotland have been paying in for 50 years…

        Here is the merchant banker Barroso’s scandalous and totally outrageous intervention in the Scottish referendum…. A moment of shame for European democracy

        https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=o86F9mxvilM

        1. Wul says:

          Thank you for the reply Douglas. I share your frustration about this type of grossly misleading and abusive intervention that then influences the popular vote.

          I am very, very angry at the stripping of my families EU citizenship on the basis of a referendum campaign (2016) that has been proven to have been fraudulent. The referendum in 2014 ( again influenced by lies and bad faith) returned a result showing that most voters in Scotland wanted to remain subjects of a scabrous UK. As UK subjects we are now leaving the EU.

          I can’t understand people voting to have less power, but they do.

  17. john burrows says:

    I’m sorry but this all is just wishful thinking. The architect of Indian emancipation, Gandhi, spent years in British prisons fighting for independence. His strategy of non violent non cooperation with the British authorities was a decades long process. De Valera and Collins endured the same in Ireland but choose the violent path in the end. Their successful outcome was more immediate. It can be argued that the Mahatma was more humane, but his approach did not prevent the British from the slaughter of Amritsar, or the million lives lost due the British governments active efforts to secure partition. Just as they did in Ireland. A wound only healed twenty years ago.

    It matters not one jot what majority the SNP gain in the next election to Holyrood. Johnson and his so called government will give it no weight at all. As far as he and his cronies are concerned, a generation in Scotland is three hundred years and he will never retreat from that position. Not during his tenure. We had the opportunity to gain independence through peaceful means in 2014. We blew it.

    The SNP has moved on. It no longer campaigns for independence. In fact, it has treated independence as the Party’s dirty little secret. I imagine that it will eventually go the same route as Labour when it removed Home rule for Scotland as part of its manifesto.

    “Lend us your vote” for this or that has been the party’s mantra ever since 2014. It is two faced and dishonest. Nowadays though, it seems to concentrate solely on creating division within the Yes movement via its idiotic missteps and tone deaf virtue signaling. The party itself is riven with factionalism courtesy of the entriests and careerists who now infest its hierarchy. None of whom gives a tinker’s damn about independence. The same types will soon be demanding the SNP drop their opposition to appointing anyone to the HoL, to allow them to join in on the fun.

    Nicola Sturgeon is popular today, but when the proverbial brown stuff hits the fan come the new year, you can be sure that all ills experienced will be laid at her doorstep. The unionist press will ensure that is the case, have no doubts. Expect to see the polls for both the SNP and Independence drop as we get closer to the May elections.

    If the Scot’s truly want their independence they will have to fight for it. Expecting Johnson, or any of his ilk, to present independence to us all tied up in a nice bow is delusional thinking and contrary to the reality of historical record. The British only concede defeat when there is blood on the streets. That is the cold reality. Integrity and honor are not in their playbook when it comes to holding onto their grouse moors. Gandhi new this. Only when the Scot’s embrace his strategy of non cooperation with the Raj will we truly be on the path to independence. The alternative is De Valera and Collin’s route. Unfortunately, the current generation of Scots has no such fire within them. But be in no doubt though, the British establishment doesn’t do peaceful transitions. The examples of Ireland and India should have taught us all that.

    Nicola Sturgeon will never set foot on either of these paths. Her caution towards independence is practically pathological. She has become very comfortable in Bute House. She has a very cozy working arrangement with the Whitehall mandarins appointed to the Scottish civil service – no doubt they think of her as worth her weight in gold to them. I imagine they would be more comfortable if she represented a unionist party, but they don’t really perceive her as a threat to their comfortable sinecures. What greater condemnation could there be of her?

    The idea that the case for Scottish independence is in her capable hands is nonsense. Her only plan is to ask Westminster for permission to hold a referendum. That’s it. It is servile and cowardly. It certainly plays into the hand of Johnson and Starmer. I for one am convinced we will never see independence during her tenure as First Minister. I would put big money on it if there was a place I could do so.

    I know she would like Scotland to be independent, as many Scots do. I heard her say so. Eloquence though is pointless if it is not accompanied by deeds. Obama should have taught us that. Like Obama, she just isn’t up to the task of forcing the issues. His tenure was a profound disappointment to many and is rightly viewed as a failure by all. Donald Trump is a direct consequence of Obama’s failure to turn words into action.

    Like Obama, Ms Sturgeon is a technocrat. As she herself has claimed, she abhors populism. That’s why you never see her on any independence march and never will. Yet populism has, and always will be a powerful tool of change. For good or ill. Brexit should have made this clear to even the dimmest. Even Obama understood this force with his “Yes We Can” campaign. Gandhi as well with his march to the sea to make salt. Ms Sturgeons failure to employ this tool is her achilles heel and will doom the Scots to the perennial rule of Westminster until she is gone. No doubt for a financially lucrative tour of the lecture circuits. After a suitable delay, I wouldn’t put it past her to accept an appointment to the HoL. How’s that for irony.

    1. Douglas Wilson says:

      A great deal of what you say is true John, but you overlook what has happened in Ireland over the last twenty years. As you know, the Good Friday Agreement allows for a referendum on the reunification of North and South, something which seems even probable after Brexit.

      London can hardly allow that referendum in an international treaty co-signed by the EU and deny one to Scotland at the same time, especially after one was already held in 2014. No, all London can do is play for time, but with Sturgeon and Murrell in charge, it could take another ten or twenty year to secure independence.

      I don’t see why we have to wait. If Sturgeon and Murrell continue with their mind numbing conservatism they should be ousted. In any case, eventually young scots, the 70% on this poll, willform another party, which I very much hope they will do quite soon…

      Why should the 70% hang around waiting for Sturgeon and Murrell?

    2. Lorna Campbell says:

      I agree with almost all of that, John, except that the Treaty route or the election to independence route are still possible even if even they might still invite repression, and even invasion, from England-as-the-UK. They are, and have always been the only two viable peaceful routes. The present court case in the domestic courts might get through the Scottish court but it will be challenged and the Supreme Court is very likely to throw it out as a challenge to the sovereignty of Westminster. I could be wrong. I hope I am, but I am not holding my breath. I doubt that anything at all can be achieved the domestic arena. The money could have been used to build a case against England-as-the-UK’s incessant breaching of the Treaty and of international law to its sole benefit, and not to the benefit of Scotland – ever, in over 300 years. Why I champion the international law route is that it could just save us from invasion and occupation by England-as-the-UK if and when we challenge its hegemony.

  18. Michael says:

    Mike, to say “hey guys, its all okay – we’re about to break through”, while at the same time acknowledging the SNP’s “complete inability to create or structure the building blocks for independence in terms of currency, a National Bank, a national energy company and many of the other institutions” – and I would add, land reform and local democracy, etc – makes me wonder what it is you think we are about to break through into?

    I really respect what you have done with Bella, particularly in the early days, it was a breath of fresh air, with genuinely diverse views and a Sottish angle that was sorely missing from the webscape. Your talent shines when you use Bella to promote cultural connection and fill gaps that the MSM ignore.

    But you political analysis is at best confused. A rise in support for independence by those who are most timid in society because the SNP has been more conservative in it’s dealing with COVID, rather than because the SNP have actually been making a convincing case for for independence and putting the foundations in place, is rather worrying.

    Ben Wray’s recent review of The Rise and Fall of the City of Money: A Financial History of Edinburgh, by Ray Perman (Birlinn, 2019), makes for interesting reading and again highlights that as support for independence has been growing since the establishment of the Scottish parliament, the actual mechanism for delivering meaningful independence have been being moved down south and off shore. Without analysis based in reality you are in danger of merrily leading people into a fantasy that does not actually exist, which seems to be NS’s approach!

    You’ve show time and again your lack of understanding of political and economic mechanisms and processes. You have big gaps in your reading regarding history, politics and the security and intelligence services. And you have become increasingly ideologically dogmatic and a victim to your conditioning. Much of your “analysis” is opinion and proclamation masked as analysis. Over the years you seem to have become less interested in understanding how things are, and working from there, and more interested in telling people how “it is”, even when you have proved yourself to have huge gaps in your understanding.

    It would be nice to see Bella ask questions and involve its audience rather than so heavily push your narrow ideological agenda and then try and make out that those that don’t see things as you do are kookie or stupid.

    * https://jacobinmag.com/2020/08/scotland-bank-edinburgh-ray-perman

    1. Thanks for your feedback Michael – I’ll respond properly tomorrow. I genuinely appreciate your analysis (though I’m sorry I disagree with it).

      I think you’ve misunderstood what I’m trying to say – which is 100% my fault.

      But thanks – its great to have your feedback. I’ll reply properly tomorrow.

    2. Hi Michael – to respond to some of your points:

      1. The point I was trying to make was that this is the world as it is, not as I’d like it to be in perfection. Its describing reality to point out that support for both the SNP and the independence is rising in the polls. This isn’t my ‘confused political analysis’ this is fact. We are now in a position where people (such as yourself presumably) view this as a negative thing. You argue that “A rise in support for independence … is rather worrying.”

      Somehow its the wrong people saying they will vote for independence, right?

      2. You argue “It would be nice to see Bella ask questions and involve its audience rather than so heavily push your narrow ideological agenda” – so we have a contributors list of over 500 people over a decade and have just launched Many Voices to extend the offering for funded places to take on Commissioning Editors. This is the opposite of “pushing my narrow ideological agenda”.

      3. You write: “You’ve show time and again your lack of understanding of political and economic mechanisms and processes. You have big gaps in your reading regarding history, politics and the security and intelligence services.” Maybe you could dispense a reading list? I presume this is because I refuse to engage with apologism for Putin and Assad’s regimes.

      4. I don’t try and make out that those who don’t see things as I do are “kookie or stupid”, though sometimes people do that for themselves.

      5. You write: “you have become increasingly ideologically dogmatic and a victim to your conditioning.” I wonder what my conditioning is? Far from being dogmatic I offers space for people to publish views I don’t agree with. Bella is a forum for open discussion. It always have been and it always will be.

      Thanks for your comments.

  19. Wul says:

    If the timid “No” voters and their ilk from the 2014 failure are to be won over then they will need to know two things:

    1) An independent Scotland will be financially viable and hopefully/eventually more prosperous ( either in cash terms or wellbeing) than at present.

    2) A newly independent Scotland will be a safe place to live.

    Where is the mass advertising campaign to relentlessly push these two important matters? Why doesn’t the SNP fund this?

    ( Actually I’d add a third: 3) To explain the extent to which Scottish assets and resources have been historically stripped, exploited and privatised and moved offshore for centuries to the detriment of Scots’ common good.

  20. Jon Southerington says:

    The events currently unfolding in Belarus show that things can move rapidly when that final straw lands on the Camel’s back. The UK Government and their cheerleaders are busily loading straws onto Scotland’s back, and I think we can see and hear patience creaking. The final straw may be one that we least expect, but it’s coming nonetheless.

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