To hell with being polite!

chris_mcelenyIt is gratifying to find any senior figure in the SNP expressing a sense of urgency and determination about action to resolve Scotland’s constitutional issue. Chris McEleny is a widely respected figure in the party. His is a powerful voice within the Yes community. When he says that the independence movement is “crying out for determined leadership”, those who aspire – or pretend – to such leadership would be well advised to listen.

In Chris’s call to action we see evidence of the new mindset which will surely be required if Scotland’s rightful constitutional status is to be restored in time to save our nation from the ongoing insult to our democracy represented by the Union – as most egregiously exemplified by Brexit – and from the further depredations threatened by a British political elite in fervent thrall to an extreme ‘One Nation’ British Nationalist ideology.

But Chris may not go far enough. For all his apparent readiness to reject the possibility of achieving independence while adhering to rules devised by the British establishment for the purpose of preserving the Union, he doesn’t seem quite able to completely resist the asserted authority which has been inculcated in the people of Scotland over centuries. I mean him no disrespect when I say that he continues to exhibit symptoms of the ‘Scottish Cringe’.

We see this in the suggestion that Scotland must establish, to Westminster’s satisfaction, its right to hold a constitutional referendum. That we must show just cause in order to qualify for the exercise of our democratic right. In this instance, the fact of being dragged out of the EU against the will of Scotland’s people. To fully embrace the requisite mindset, we must rid ourselves of such notions.

If we are to “look like we mean what we say” then we must evince total confidence in our absolute and inalienable right to self-determination. We must not show the slightest hint of being prepared to compromise that right. We must, in all things and at all times, act and speak as a nation fully entitled to freely choose the form of government which best suits our needs.

This means that we must also have full authority to decide the manner in which we make this choice. We cannot sensibly suppose that a process by which we might exercise our right of self-determination can possibly arise within the context of a political union contrived and developed as a constitutional device by which to deny us the full and proper exercise of our sovereignty. We must determine and control the process such as to exclude all possibility of intervention or interference from a British state intent upon preventing it proceeding to a truly democratic conclusion.

I question whether Chris’s proposal achieves this. Using a UK general election as a proxy referendum means we depend on the British government calling that referendum. And doing so in timely fashion. Making the next Holyrood election a vote on independence means waiting until 2021 – by which time, who knows what damage the British political elite will have wrought on Scotland. Who knows if we will even have a functional Scottish Parliament by then?

Chris is unquestionably right about one thing. We have “ever so politely played the game” by the British state’s rules. It has been amply demonstrated that doing so is detrimental, not only to our cause, but to our democracy. I strongly suspect that, if the cause of restoring Scotland’s independence is to succeed, we may have to abandon politeness altogether.

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7 thoughts on “To hell with being polite!

  1. And sooner rather than later. This mindset that we need Westminsters permission has to be thoroughly expunged. Great piece on where we are at.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Spot on Peter. If Scotland wants the constitutional rights that other nations take for granted it must act as the independent nation it is and hold a referendum with or without the agreement of the British state. If the unionists boycott the referendum that is only to the seperatist’s advantage. The result is the result!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. ” I strongly suspect that, if the cause of restoring Scotland’s independence is to succeed, we may have to abandon politeness altogether”.

    Charles de Gaulle: “A nation state worthy of the name does not have friends – it merely has objectives”.

    Perhaps he was correct.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Well said Peter. The time for politeness may be passed. What has arrived is the time to start creating structures and procedures which the independent state of Scotland will use to govern itself:-

    Like – regulatory frameworks whose purpose is to actually work for the benefit of our population. A central bank to manage our sovereign currency and economic climate. Examination of potential sub-parliamentary governance (levels and powers of local democratic arrays or webs). A written constitution. Proposals for defined universal service obligations including their delivery and governance mechanisms. Ever more carefully defined defense structures / resources. Defining climatic stress reliefs, eg., fuels policies. Health, education and social services objectives / resources.

    As implied above it may be necessary to actively mitigate dangers to our existing parliament.

    There is a huge, huge job to be done. I will march and leaflet with the best but am not naive enough to think independence will be won by just wishing for it.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I really love peter. You’re awesome. We’ve had our differences but good to see everyone is finally realising sovereignty isnt the issue. Political will* is the issue.

    What do we know.

    We know the parliament of the UK was established in the treaties of 1706 and 1707. And our respective rights and privileges of each nation protected by those treaties, then as a UK parliament they all produced the act(s) of union 1707, which established the UKs reserved powers*. And…… Thanks to the wise parcel of rogues, and the words “pursuant to the claim of right” , sovereignty is vested in the people.

    C.28 of the claim of right (Scotland) 1698 is inbedded as an unchallenged (to date) and sovereign right of the people to recall our MPs and recall Scotland’s sovereign parliament via its MPs and Msps and MEPs, any time we petition it for eg, and its reserved right to protect Scotland Et al and remedy any grievance of the laws AND treaties of Scotland.

    SNP know this.
    We all know this.
    They know we know this.
    And they know the supreme court ruling which is currently overdue…… Will probably be the starting gun for a nation convention and a recall of all our representative will to deal with this entire debacle……. But will the SNP keep with this bullshit slowly slowly nicey catchy monkey crap pur will they grow some balls and stand on their principles and finally force the issue into the dawn …. I hope for the latter but then, I ain’t in charge, they’re seemingly doing the former……

    Last chance saloon for me I’ll never vote SNP again if they don’t pull the trigger before its too late. March 2019 or just for me.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Thing is May’s deal is dead in the water before it ever goes back to the EU. The deal will be rejected by Westminster. So what happens? She will resign, Yes!

    Then what? Jacob Rees Mogg takes over as temporary Lord Of The Flies. Does he need an election? Not necessarily. He just needs the backing of the party. Gordon Brown was never elected by the people. I don’t think a general election is coming. I think we are going for a political coup by the Tories on a crash and burn Brexit.

    The SNP need to be ready for an emergency situation. The referendum will be required immediately to protect Scotland from this suicide mission the Tories are on track for. Immediately the no deal is confirmed the SNP need to step into the breach and rescue Scotland.

    2021 is an election we might never see. The Tories are going to quash our parliament. They are an incompetent government , but they are also dangerous , very dangerous.

    Liked by 2 people

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