A movement slumbers

We were assured that support for Yes would get a massive boost from Brexit. Six years on from the EU referendum, three years after the UK was originally supposed to leave the EU, more than 15 months on from the UK actually quitting the EU, we are still waiting to see that boost.

We are still being assured that Yes will get a massive boost from Brexit. When confronted with the fact that support for Yes as indicated by polling has not risen by so much as a single percentage point since the referendum in September 2014, SNP/Sturgeon loyalists tell us we need to be patient. Just wait until Brexit starts to bite, they say. Just wait until people start to feel the impact, they tell us. You must wait, they insist – ignoring the fact that waiting is all we’ve done since 2014. We don’t need to be told to wait. We are given no choice in the matter.

When we were told that once it was realised, the reality of Brexit would give a massive boost to support for Yes, I and others pointed out that it is not the reality that matters but the perception. And who controls or can be assured of the cooperation of the main tools by which public perceptions are manipulated? The British state, of course!

Do an internet search for “Brexit not as bad as expected” and you’ll see what I mean. It’s not only the BBC that’s playing down the consequences of this folly, the propaganda is everywhere.

The SNP/Scottish Government chose to rely on what the British political elite was doing instead of taking action. Even before Nicola Sturgeon formally cancelled the independence campaign at the start of the public health emergency, her ‘strategy’ was to let the British do unto Scotland what England-as-Britain has always done unto Scotland in the hope and expectation that this would drive support for Scotland’s cause. She could then take credit for this surge. There has been no surge.

Is Sturgeon taking responsibility for this failure? Of course not! While the British state’s propaganda machine is working to have Brexit perceived as “not as bad as expected”, the SNP/Scottish Government’s propaganda apparatus – including this newspaper – has been deployed to convince the gullible that support for independence has been rising, when clearly it hasn’t. The nadir of this clumsy deception being the inane assertion that “we’ve never been closer to independence”, closely followed by constant repetition of the claim that “independence is inevitable”.

The product of this combined effort by the British and Scottish establishments is a pervasive complacency that lies over the Yes movement like a wet blanket, stifling all attempts to rouse the movement to collective action.

This would be bad enough if it was just the ‘usual’ suspects of the #WheeshtForIndy mob and the Panglossian believers in ‘Nicola’s Great Secret Plan’. But the insidious effects of this damping reach even to those parts of the Yes movement that are prepared to express their discontent. Typically, demands for action are accompanied by references to future elections and/or timescales stretching far into the future. The notion that “time is on our side” has very effectively augmented the complacency-inducing mantra of ‘never closer/inevitable’.

There needs to be a mass awakening. And it needs to be soon.

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5 thoughts on “A movement slumbers

  1. It’s simply the boiling frog problem. Rev. Stuart Campbell has said repeatedly that there won’t be a significant up-tick in support for Yes until the campaign starts. People are simply too busy putting food on the table and worrying about keeping body, soul and family together. Against a back-drop of “heat or eat” then independence is just an abstract idea – which currently comes with a huge caveat – there’s no guarantee that things will be any better. That’s what 8 years of indecision and inaction bought.

    Liked by 7 people

  2. When you put the kettle on for a cup of tea, you wit for the water to reach boiling point, then you make the tea, having warmed the pot first. If you wait till the water is off the boil and then try to make tea, it will taste vile and you will not drink it, but throw it away. Any sensible tea drinker knows that. Or alternative, make hay while the sun shines, or strike while the iron is hot. These are all cliches because they are truisms, as well. We do not have time to hang around, but, if no one does anything, that is what we will do, and the effect will be much reduced.

    Liked by 6 people

  3. Hi Peter,

    Again, in the end, after all considerations, Independence has nothing to do with economy nor party politics.
    Independence comes with leaders, martyrs with refusing, fighting the system, with acts … Scotland being nevertheless a great country cannot rewrite History. Those who keep on telling us that it can are not on our side. Scotland is one of the last “developped” country to be under the power of a foreign State, we should wonder why it takes so long ? Simply the approach is wrong …

    Take care


    Liked by 4 people

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