I wonder if Nicola Sturgeon realises how offensive it is to hear her repeatedly beg the British political elite for something which is ours by absolute right.
If Scotland is not prepared to face challenges – in court or anywhere else – to its constitutional claim, then Scotland is not ready to be restored to the status of an independent nation. Independent nations which are worthy of that designation do not seek to avoid such challenges. They stand ready to confront and defeat them.
I will maintain unto my dying breath and with every portion of my spirit and with every fraction of my intellect that Scotland is a nation fit to assume its rightful constitutional status and assert its nationhood against any who would deny it.
Nicola Sturgeon is a lawyer. Lawyers tend to go for what they see as the easy win. They opt for the path of least resistance. They make trade-offs to smooth the way. In doing so, they may well forget that they are dealing, not just with statutes and treaties and such, but with actual people. They lose sight of the effect their compromises have on those people. They forget that the things they give away in order to achieve the end that they pursue are things that may be hugely important to people, even if they have little or no legal or political significance.
What about our dignity, Nicola? If that is sacrificed now in the name of shallow political expediency, what will we have left when it comes to dealing with the challenges which must confront a nation newly freed from an injurious and demeaning political union? I have always felt that ending the Union is, in no small measure, about restoring Scotland’s dignity. Have I really been so wrong all these years?
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9 thoughts on “What about dignity?”
“…Lawyers tend to go for what they see as the easy win. They opt for the path of least resistance…”
Not always, Mr Bell, not always. The Court of Session ruling was rather predictable, given that the British Constitution is an unwritten mass of convention, statute, tradition, principle and precedent. It should be evident to any lawyer, if not the layman, that it confers almost unlimited power upon the Executive, which can add to that almost unlimited power by helping itself to Royal Prerogative on top of everything else. That does not mean that we have no constitution or that a written constitution would be inviolable. No such thing.
The Scottish jurists who drafted the Treaty of Union did so in the knowledge that, as experience told them, the likelihood of England trying to use the Union to subsume Scotland was eminently foreseeable and feasible, and they strove to protect the people from the worst excesses of English Nationalism. That Scotland has survived relatively intact to the present day, is down to them and the care they took to try and cement in protections around us, our institutions and our culture. The law itself becomes the very last bastion of civilization, as students of the Nazi era in Germany will appreciate because the law there, at that time, was subverted to serve the state and those who purported to serve the state. German lawyers and judges were indicted after the war to stand trial for abuse of their legal oaths, just as the medical profession was for allowing the Nazis to subvert medicine and the profession for their own ends. That did not mean that there was no law or no medical treatment during the Nazi era – just that the unscrupulous and the weak subverted them for their own ends or did nothing to stand up for their proper application. That is the problem, as always – people.
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“I have always felt that ending the Union is, in no small measure, about restoring Scotland’s dignity. Have I really been so wrong all these years?”
No, you haven’t, Peter.
Indeed, self respect is borne of independence, be it that of the individual or of a People.
I believe that your second paragraph says it all. The principle of this should be spread into every nook of the Scottish psyche. Unless we are prepared to take responsibility, we have no prospect of success as an independent nation/human being.
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No, you are not wrong, Peter.
Get off your knees Nicola, and fight!
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When you beg another nation for something which is not theirs to give. You automatically concede that you are their serfs.
Not only that. To compound it by asking again ,after being insulted the first time. Is the very essence of utter stupidity.
They can say no forever. It doesn’t matter how many mandates you have. They care not a jot. It’s about a master and servant relationship.
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Jacob Rees Mogg states, correctly, that government derives it’s power from the people. Sturgeon, supposedly a left-of-centre independence-supporting politcian, looks upwards and tugging forelock, asks for permission from Jacob and the rest.
Amen and Amen, Peter!
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Every angry fibre of my being agrees with Peter. I have been SNP and Independence since 1975
I disagree that Lawyers go for the ‘easy win’. My experience of Lawyers, in business, is that they usually tell you ‘what you cannot do by law’, and rarely tell you ‘how to do what you want to do’ unless you push them to think outside the box.
So many times I have told Lawyers in the business context, tell me ‘how to do it’, I don’t want to hear ‘can’t’.
Anyway, I am suppressing my rage a little longer until I see if finally, more people have wakened to the reality of the reemergence of the ENP – The English Nationalist Party (Right Wing Tories + Brexit Party + UKIP) and what this means for Scotland.
We need to wind the hearts and minds of more residents of Scotland. We still have a number of obstacles and challenges to overcome.
1. The propaganda that carpet bombs us daily. The sheer blitz of fear, smear and sneer.
2. The BBC. A state actor, biased and directed by the establishment. And yet many YES Scots still pay up. (Where is their dignity?)
3. The anachronistic, prejudiced ignorant bigots of the Flutes, Drums and Gers establishment that connects so well to the UK Establishment and Unionist politicians
4. The need for real undeniable, unarguable, financial data around the economic status and prospects for Scotland.
5. To have regular and reliable polls.
6. To have the vote counting scrutinised and monitored by the EU or United Nations.
7. Finally, to have all the YES powers, groups, influencers aligned and all harnessed and pulling in one direction
These are the things that we need to fix before demanding that we push ahead now. Personally, when I see the ‘state’ of the ‘Scottish Independence Resorces’, I realise that we need much improvement if we are going to beat Westminster.
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Thanks for the thought-provoking comment. I would only take serious issue with the fourth point on your list; while expressing some reservations about number 7.
We must not allow the debate to be dragged once again from the realm of the constitution onto the battlefield of economics. There is absolutely no possibility of the “real undeniable, unarguable, financial data” that you hope for. It does not exist. What we get is a plethora of claims and counterclaims; assertions and rebuttals; assumptions and alternative assumptions. All of which serves only to create a confusing fog of doubt which obscures the core issue – the constitution. This is what happened in the 2014 campaign. Why anybody would be daft enough to want to repeat that is beyond me.
Learn the lessons of the first referendum campaign! We were beaten, not by better data, but by bigger doubts. Doubts that were largely created by the simple act of asking questions. Doubts that were exaggerated by the British state’s propaganda machine and, crucially, amplified by the Yes side’s frantic efforts to answer those questions. This process of creating doubt was, as it always will be, nowhere more effective than in the area of economics. For the very obvious reason that there are, and can be, no economic certainties. There is nothing that might be stated by one economist that cannot be disputed, discounted or ‘disproved’ by another. The political campaign becomes a battle of the bean-counters in which victory invariably goes to the side with the biggest abacus.
Assuming that Scotland must justify its constitutional claim on economic grounds is symptomatic of the colonised mind. Independence is normal. It is the Union which is anomalous. It is the Union which must be justified. Instead of essaying the Sisyphean task of trying to answer every question in such a way as to satisfy everyone who might be looking for an answer, put your energies into formulating and posing the questions which will put our opponents onto the defensive.
As to your call to “have the vote counting scrutinised and monitored by the EU or United Nations”, I hear this a lot. But I don’t hear any explanation of what it is these EU or United Nations scrutineers and monitors might do that isn’t being done under existing arrangements. Vote counting is already scrutinised and monitored to the point where systematic tampering on any significant scale is impossible. How would this be improved by bringing in people from these organisations? It’s a solution for a problem which doesn’t exist.