The practicalities of divorce proceedings

Ruth Wishart’s column in The National today (Enough gaslighting … Scotland is done with this marriage) is long on rhetoric. Woefully short on explanation. Divorces don’t just happen. No matter how total the breakdown of the marriage it remains a binding contract until the contract is cancelled. For that to happen one of the parties to the contract has to act. As in take effective action. As in do what the Scottish Government has shown not the slightest inclination to do.

I’ll wager there is not one person of an age to have observed – and in some cases experienced – a few marriages over time who is not aware of a marital partnership which persisted despite every outward indication of being irreparably broken. Women in particular are known to ‘learn to live with’ abusive relationships in ways that defy the understanding of even the most perspicacious of those who are aware of the reality.

If, with a gun at my head, I were required to give a one word explanation for this readiness to tolerate the intolerable the word I would choose is inertia. There is a point at which the abused party becomes so diminished by their conditions of existence as to lack the physical and intellectual resources that altering those conditions would demand. When the abused party reaches this point no promise of a better condition will be sufficient to overcome the inertia that binds them as effectively as any chains. The more effective the abuse the less credible does any such promise seem. The more fleeting and tenuous the moments of relative happiness in an abusive relationship the less the inclination to put those moments in jeopardy by gambling on something assumed to be unattainable.

Overcoming the inertia requires not only a belief in the possibility of a better place to be but an awareness of reality which must be escaped. The breakthrough comes when the abused party acknowledges the reality of their condition and recognises that it is only their denial of how bad things are that prevents them accepting the possibility of better. In that moment, inertia is overcome. In that instant, a metamorphosis begins.

So long as the moment is seized. So long as the instant isn’t allowed to simply slip away. So long as action is taken before momentum is lost. So long as the necessary action is correctly identified.

The point, lest it have been lost in the foregoing, is that the fact of things being bad does not in itself imply that things must change. Overcoming inertia requires three things. Recognition of present reality. Acceptance of the possibility of a different reality. And awareness of the action required to initiate movement from the former to the latter.

Ruth Wishart paints a fairly graphic picture of the reality of Scotland’s status in the pretendy partnership of the Union. She even makes clear that the toxicity of this ‘precious’ Union is not attributable entirely to the relatively recent phenomenon of Boris Johnson and the variant strain of British Nationalism he represents, but has been a characteristic of the Union from its inception. What she writes hear may well aid recognition of Scotland’s present reality and encourage recognition of the need to escape it. What she fails to do is explain the action needed to change that reality. Without that, how might people accept that a better reality is attainable?

The line we’re being fed by the SNP leadership and its apologists is that if the ‘case for independence’ is kept polished then we need only wait for Scotland’s present reality to get bad enough and independence will happen. There is no attempt to address the matter of how. In fact, considerable effort is going into preventing or at least damping down discussion of what action will best serve to take advantage of the moment when inertia loses its grip.

Some of us have been giving much thought to this over many years. Some of us are ready and willing to talk about what must be done, as opposed to merely bleating about how dreadful it all is or banging on about our delightful vision of Scotland’s future. Some of us would really like to address the practicalities of restoring Scotland’s independence. We were done with this marriage a long time ago. Isn’t it about time we actually started the divorce proceedings?

6 thoughts on “The practicalities of divorce proceedings

  1. The Marriage analogy works in general but doesn’t reflect that the partners, in this case, are only able to act once a majority of the cells are aligned in favour. Sadly, we can’t face combatants armed with only polls! We need take a referendum to the people.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Spot on Peter. Perhaps the real function of the SNP is not about Independence but rather for the people to get used to dependence and get gifted a few sweeties along the way to zombiehood. If the SNP can’t or won’t do it we must gather together those that can and JFDI.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I tried to open a discussion on how in my ISP branch via our online forum. My musings on the reality of it caused one person to resign from the party. They naively thought that just pressuring the SNP would magically solve everything.

    We may need to not just threaten a declaration we must be prepared to go there and be seen to be prepared to go there and Sturgeon is absolutely not the person to do that, she’s a paper tiger and WM know it.

    If we do declare I will bet that WM will beg us to have an agreed S30 process instead. Anything other than the chaos of a no deal exit they civil servants and advisors will tell the PM. We will be able to resist a third federal question being imposed or the wording changed from last time.

    But we have to mean it which includes building the necessary structures and organisations to run an independent country. Which is what we should have been doing during the last 5 years. A set of shadow accounts not tied to WM would be a start for eg. To be used to cut us off during a hard divorce. Something, apart from having a hostile armed force occupying them that the Catalans did not do when they declared. Madrid just cut them off.

    With Scots law separate we can threaten businesses and people with the gaol for tax evasion if they don’t pay taxes to iScotland. We are actually in a not bad place but it can be better. Build the NIB in such a way that it can be transformed or expanded into a Central Bank for eg. Have people ready to roll to set it up. Do all this openly so WM knows, they will know anyway so don’t even try to hide it. Put the wind up them. Show we are serious.

    By doing none of this the SNP show they are not serious about Indy.


    1. ISP is a perfect example of what I was referring to when I said that the Yes movement should not allow itself to be distracted in the way that the SNP has. A pointless and potentially dangerous distraction.


      1. Right, so folk, like myself who are Yes but opposed to GRA should do what exactly? spoil our ballot papers? I joined out of gratitude for the simple fact that they are here offering that option. Nobody is being made to vote for us.

        We will take seats off unionists on the List who get them by default because the SNP hoover up all the constituencies, as happened here in the NE without even getting all of them.

        What is wrong with electing Yessers on the List instead of unionists vs wasting your vote voting SNP2 and electing nobody?


        1. Did I not say that I don’t do fantasy politics? I am entirely focused on the fight to end the Union and restore Scotland’s independence. The cunning plan parties have nothing to do with that fight and contribute nothing to it. I am too old and cynical to fall for such scams.

          It’s not for me to tell people how to vote. All I would say to them is that they should switch off from the glib rhetoric and the glittering generalities and really think things through. Follow the chains of known facts, logic and rational assumption through to all credible post-election scenarios. Then they too will see the snake-oil peddlers for what they are.

          Alternatively, try asking them what they they will actually DO in purely practical terms to advance Scotland’s cause. Don’t be intimidated by the abuse you’ll get instead of an answer. Don’t accept the crap about wasting votes and helping the “yoons”. Demand to know exactly what they think they can contribute to the fight. They’re trying to sell you something. Take a very close look at what they are offering. I have. And there’s fuck all.

          I certainly won’t be wasting my vote on somebody’s ego-trip. I’ll stick with cold, hard political reality.


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