It’s a knockout!

Mike Fenwick

The upcoming decisions of the Supreme Court will prove important, but might it be the decisions of a new UK Prime Minister that matter even more? In boxing, the knockout punch, the killer blow, is often the one nobody ever saw coming! This wasn’t a killer blow, but it has a very important lesson for us ─ I want to take you back to events in 2014.

Most of those reading this post will always remember the 18th of September 2014 ─ but will have completely forgotten what happened exactly four days later. Just four days after the result of the Referendum was announced, the then Prime Minister, David Cameron, stood at a lectern outside 10 Downing Street and announced EVE ─ English Votes for English Laws.

Yes, that has since been repealed. But please ask yourself this – at any point from say 2012 to 2014 did you ever hear of the plan to introduce EVEL? Was everything that EVEL involved ─ was all of it, every word, every dot and comma, just thrown together in a rush in just 4 days? Or had it all been pre-prepared for use as and when and if required.

If that is a lesson we should learn from, please ask yourself ─ what is being prepared behind closed doors right now? What is it that we may not be seeing but might prove to be a killer punch?

Let’s start with the fact that, behind doors closed to us, whether we like it or not, and whether we voted for it or not, we are about to have a new Prison Governor. (In an earlier post I said that I saw the Scotland Act as our prison ─ so Prison Governor is appropriate, and I am guessing a she.). Remember, she will have 320 prison guards and a UK Parliament majority of MPs. That gives her as much power as she could wish for ─ either to introduce new laws or amend existing laws, such as the Scotland Act, in any way she might decide.

Q1: Does she have any such plans?

How about her comment saying she would change the Scotland Act to give parliamentary privilege to MSPs, in order to create more “robust questioning” of ministers and increase the powers of the Scottish Parliament to “hold the Scottish Government to account.”?

How about other comments: “I think the best thing to do with Nicola Sturgeon is ignore her.”? Or ” … making sure that all of our government policies apply right across the United Kingdom.”?

For that last quote think of the Internal Market Act where legislation passed, even unanimously, by the Scottish Parliament can be struck down by the UK Parliament. Think also even now how funds can be diverted away from the Scottish Parliament and given directly to Unionist controlled local authorities.

Call foul, say these are punches below the belt, complain as much as you like, but maybe there is even worse to come.

Q2: Does our new Prison Governor have any help creating her plans for Scotland’s future?

How about Lord Frost, the UK’s former Brexit negotiator and vocal Liz Truss supporter? Does he have a plan to stop independence from effectively ever being achieved? In the Telegraph he has been quoted this way:

Of course, any government would have to respect the settled will of an overwhelming majority in Scotland to govern themselves. But those terms have to be defined. I would suggest 75% of seats in the Scottish Parliament in favour of independence, over a 10-year period, legally binding. Without that, a referendum should simply be impossible.

Lord Frost added that the “devolution settlement is not written in stone” – suggesting that as it has evolved since 1999 “it can evolve back, too”.

Think back please to the lesson from 2014, and EVEL. Instead of endlessly repeating “No”, or “Not at this time” – might plans already be in place to amend and severely restrict the Scotland Act?

But hang on, you may rightly ask, what about the Supreme Court in October? OK! The Court submissions emphasise that it won’t lead to a referendum on independence itself, but it is set up to remove any doubts over the powers of the Scottish Parliament to hold a referendum. That’s got to be important, surely!

Most knockout punches happen after you have been distracted and made to look elsewhere, that’s when the killer blow lands, the one you never saw coming!

12 thoughts on “It’s a knockout!

  1. Interesting.

    My memory must be playing tricks on me because I could have sworn this happened the very day after the 2014 referendum. I remember thinking we were finally seeing the true wicked and callous face of Tory unionism in it’s gloating moment of triumph. I also thought it was clearly planned in advance – probably by the same creative writers as had penned the famous ‘vow.’

    I have absolutely no doubt that Liz Truss will be the next UK PM. She has three distinct advantages over Sunak in the eyes of the Tory retired colonels – she has white skin, she is stupid and she is malleable.

    These warnings of what the Tories might eventually do to bring Scotland to heel are not new. Bloggers like Peter Bell and Indycar Gordon Ross have been warning for years about direct rule from London and the closure of the devolved assemblies in the name of a national emergency. I remember Mike Russell was challenged about this at conference and he said he didn’t believe they would do that.

    I have long had a fear that the SNP were underestimating just how sleekit and ruthless these bastards could be. They might well be in for a rude awakening as might the people of Scotland.

    I would be interested to see how we, as a nation, react to this ultimate insult. This needs to be brought to a head one way or another.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Was all set to give this post a like until the now inevitable and unnecessary anti-SNP comment. The idea that the SNP are “underestimating” the Tories capacity for ruthlessness is unsubstantiated nonsense.

      It’s easy to sit on the internet and make claims of opposition skullduggery when you will never be publicly reminded of any you got wrong by that same opposition as well as the media. The SNP as a party and as individual elected politicians do not have that luxury. There’s fewer more effective ways of undermining an opponents credibility than citing the “cried wolf” analogy in respect of previous claims.

      Peter and yourself can make these claims and know them to be true, even if they don’t come to fruition. The SNP cannot, unless they have irrefutable proof, even though they know it to be true. A list of unproven allegations would, arguably, just make Tory skullduggery easier for them to sneak past the eyes of a now sceptical public.

      Och, I’ll “like” it anyway 🙂


    1. Ian (Scotland won’t stand for it )Blackford isn’t afraid infact he’s really happy at Westminster.

      It says it all really, Blackford like the rest of the SNP MPs will need to be dragged kicking and screaming out of the House of Commons just like Julian Assange was from the Ecuadorian embassy. The difference for me is that I have great respect for Assange



  2. The UKSC route is a dead duck the gutless Bain, Sturgeon’s attack dog made sure of that when she bottled it, part of the plan I might add.

    As for Truss, I get the feeling she wants to outdo Thatcher in nastiness and Scotland will be front and centre when the attacks happen, she’ll impede interfere and generally try and roll back devolution by any means necessary, make no mistake its not just tough talk for the 160,000 Tories, (who will in most part elected her to party leader and PM), many of whom well never know their identity.

    What about Sunak I hear you say, to be blunt the Tories will never elect an Indian man to Number Ten. Meanwhile back home in Scotland the entire indy cause is in utter chaos due to Sturgeon, who wants to dissolve the union as much as I want a hole in my head.

    I haven’t a clue where or even how we’ll move on from this utter shit show, I suppose the first step is to oust Sturgeon from Bute House, but pulling the leech out I’ve heard that the head still remains in, so Murrell and a few others Such as Robertson and the clique will need to be removed from office as well. The SNP is in a dire state, is even worth saving.


  3. ‘The idea that the SNP are “underestimating” the Tories capacity for ruthlessness is unsubstantiated nonsense.’

    MBG, I think I did substantiate that claim with what Mike Russell is quoted as saying at the SNP conference. Now we’re hearing how much the leader of our Westminster group enjoys the House of Commons! Good grief!

    Look at the state of us. We’re dragged out of the EU and facing the worst decline in living standards since the second world war. Yet our Westminster leader says it’s jolly good fun debating issues across the chamber whilst another prominent SNP leader says he doesn’t believe the Tories would be so beastly and unsporting!

    Maybe these are quotes they should consider more carefully lest they come back to bite them.

    Thanks for the ‘like’ anyway.


    1. The quotes you give substantiate nothing in respect of the SNPs awareness of potential Tory ruthlessness.

      Russell’s only highlights my point about not being able to call out potential skullduggery when it has not been evidenced yet, while Blackford’s claim of “liking” the Westminster experience is neither here nor there in respect of anything. So he enjoys his job, so what? It’s a good thing. It doesn’t mean his commitment to Scottish independence is diminished. My brother enjoys his frequent trips to London his work requires of him. However, he certainly doesn’t want to move there and his commitment to independence remains complete.

      It just sounds like looking for anything to slag the SNP with. But then, as I frequently say, that is only my opinion. I doubt either of us is going to change the others mind on any of it.


      1. “So he enjoys his job”

        Becoming a nationalist MP is a ‘job’? Jings, an A thocht hit wis aboot leeberatin the Scots fowk. Silly me.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Being an MP is a job. It’s not a difficult concept to grasp. Whether the desired outcome of your work is Scottish Independence or selling more Rice Crispies, it is still a job.


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