My first reaction on seeing a headline such as this in today’s Sunday National ─ UK Government considering legislation that would require 50 per cent of entire electorate to vote Yes in indyref2 ─ is to wonder why readers might be taken aback by being thus informed of the British state’s intentions towards Scotland. It’s not like this is news. If there is anything surprising at all about the rumoured measures to lock Scotland in jealous Britannia’s leprous embrace forever and ever, it’s that the measures themselves are innocuous relative to what some of us have been anticipating for ten years and more.
Elsewhere in the Sunday National, Ruth Wishart apprises us of the latest demented ranting from that exemplar of spitting, spluttering, slavering British Nationalist fanaticism, Stephen Daisley. In the spate of his seething detestation of Scotland’s distinctiveness, Daisley presents a particularly obnoxious spectacle (archived). I’m duly grateful that Ruth ventured into that roiling cauldron of bile so that I didn’t have to. I trust she showered thoroughly afterwards. Like the smell of putrefaction, the stench of Daisley’s imperious British exceptionalism clings. The measures to thwart Scotland’s aspirations that he commends wear the term ‘Draconian’ like a suit several sizes too small. Ruth gives us a sense of the vileness.
1) The United Kingdom should continue to exist as currently constituted.
2) In the UK, sovereignty resides exclusively at Westminster, or ‘the crown-in-parliament under God’.
3) The devolved institutions in Scotland and Wales operate within a framework defined by principles 1) and 2) and should be forbidden, by statute if necessary, from any actions contrary to these principles.
This is not an either-or situation. It’s not a choice between the harshness of Truss and the heartlessness of Daisley. All of what both are saying ─ or rumoured to be saying ─ is believable. The proposals identified in both articles mentioned above are perfectly credible regardless of how appalling to those who adhere to democratic principles. That the British would react thus to Scotland’s persistent independence movement was always inevitable and entirely predictable. We know that preserving the Union is an existential imperative for the British state. Add to that imperative the No vote in 2014 which gave the British political elite licence to dispose of Scotland as they will and the EU referendum which gave them the opening to constitutionally redefine the UK and you have the perfect combination of motive, means and opportunity. Give motive, means and opportunity to sociopaths such as Boris Johnson or Liz Truss and what can you expect other than that a crime will be committed?
It has taken longer than I anticipated. But there can be no doubt now that the mad axe
manperson is poised to hack Scotland’s democracy to a bloody pulp. Incredible as some of this may have seemed a decade ago, today what is astonishing is that anybody can remain oblivious to the threat. It is incomprehensible that there can still be people proclaiming that we have ‘never been closer to independence’. It is inexplicable that there can still be people in the Yes movement talking of compromises and/or ‘the long game’. It defies reason that so little has been done to pull Scotland from under the tracks of the trundling British Nationalist juggernaut.
Urged on by the British media and nutters like Daisley, the British political elite is openly contemplating anti-democratic measures that would embarrass a banana republic. Meanwhile, Scotland’s own political elite is farting around with half-measures and less. We are sauntering into a long night of oppression with not so much as a candle to fend off the gloom.
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