I wonder about the whole idea of arguments about policy or strategy being a distraction from the main event and the principal objective. It seems to me – and one can do no more than gain an impression about such things – that the vast majority of pro-independence voters are fully aware of what that main event is. And it is because they are clear in their minds about the principal objective that they are able to discuss other matters.
Even among the combatants in the “gender wars” there is an underlying determination to elect as many SNP candidates as possible. We are at the stage where the SNP is the default choice for most people. There is nothing the British parties can offer that might win over these voters. Neither is there anything the SNP, or any faction therein, can do to deter them.
Such is the blindingly obvious necessity of voting SNP that the party barely needs to campaign. The greater threat to that principal objective of maximising both the SNP vote and the number of SNP MPs is the idleness which may be bred by complacency. People are, I feel, considerably more likely to stay home on polling day because they reckon the battle is already won than because of some disagreement about policy or strategy.
As bloody as skirmishes in the gender wars may get, the unpleasantness is, in most cases, kept quite separate from voting intentions. It is a commonplace of social media to find raging diatribes about this or that policy which end with the assurance that the author will be voting SNP regardless. People, like myself, who have grave concerns about the commitment to the Section 30 process will not be deterred from voting for their SNP candidate on account of these concerns.
This overriding determination to vote SNP reflects the overarching nature of constitutional politics. Whichever side of any dispute over policy or strategy we may be on, all share the same conviction that the decisions on these matters must be made in Scotland.
There will always be a few who are shallow-minded enough put their narrow policy agenda before securing the means of realising that agenda. But the impact on the outcome of these people taking their vote away from the SNP and elther giving it to the British parties or chucking it in the bin must be negligible. Democracy works best when participation is greatest because that way the zanies and the zealots get lost in the numbers.
Thursday is the main event. Turnout is key. The principal aim being to maximise the SNP vote and presence at Westminster, every single vote counts. No disagreement about policy or strategy is more important than this.
GET OUT TO VOTE!
GET THE VOTE OUT!
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