And so the deception continues. (Nicola Sturgeon: One year to go until Scotland can ‘choose a better future’) Apparently, with great success. Very large numbers of people seem to be convinced that the proposed referendum is an opportunity to “decide their own future”. Sturgeon has them captivated.
It’s all lies, of course. But the lies are more immediately appealing than the reality. So, most people naturally choose to believe the lies. They decline to question the story they’re being told. They refuse to ask even the most obvious questions. Questions such as: What actually happens if/when Yes wins this referendum? What ensues from that victory?
The answer – the HONEST answer is, nothing! Precisely nothing! Nothing will have changed. No progress will have been made towards restoring Scotland’s independence. We will be in almost exactly the same place as we are now, except we’ll have had the second referendum that we’d been demanding.
Has Nicola Sturgeon explained what will happen if/when there is a Yes vote? I mean what will actually occur, not what she hopes will come about. Has she set out the next steps? Perhaps more to the point at this stage, has anybody even asked her to explain how she intends to translate a Yes vote in the proposed referendum into the restoration of Scotland’s independence?
Is there any doubt that this is what most people understand by the phrase “decide their own future”? Is there any doubt that this is what they are supposed to think it means? Is there any doubt that when people put their mark next to the Yes option on the ballot paper, they do so supposing that this is to make Scotland an independent nation again?
Is there any doubt that they will be tragically wrong in this assumption?
That the proposed referendum will have no effect is not a matter of one person’s opinion. It is a legal fact by virtue of having been clearly stated in the Scottish Government’s arguments submitted to the UK Supreme Court (UKSC). It is a political fact in that it has been confirmed by the First Minister and those close to her. The following clarification was provided by Mhairi Hunter, the former election agent and close confidante of Nicola Sturgeon, the day after the announcement of the October 2023 referendum.
If Supreme Court finds Scotland Act prevents [the Scottish Parliament] legislating for an indyref, and if there is no movement from UK Gov & allies (including Labour), pro indy parties will campaign in next GE for a mandate to start indy negotiations with UK Gov. It will be a de facto referendum.
A successful outcome will not lead to a declaration of independence. There is no route to independence that does not involve the agreement of UK Gov. But it would be politically impossible to continue to deny a mandate for a second referendum in the face of a Yes win.
Note that sentence! “THERE IS NO ROUTE TO INDEPENDENCE THAT DOES NOT INVOLVE THE AGREEMENT OF UK GOV. ” (my emphasis). Although Mhairi Hunter is referring to the ridiculous ‘Plan B’ to pretend the next UK general election is a Scottish referendum, that statement is categorical enough that it must also apply to the proposed referendum. Mhairi Hunter is actually answering the question none of the Sturgeon/SNP loyalists want to ask. What happens after a Yes vote is NOTHING – unless the UK Government agrees. The one certainty that we all can anchor ourselves to is that the UK Government will NEVER agree to any process which would place the Union in jeopardy. So, the short answer to the question of what happens if there is a Yes vote is NOTHING.
Mhairi Hunter pins the SNP’s hopes to a gobbet of wishful thinking so fantastical that only the most wilfully credulous could possibly take it seriously. In her best Jackanory voice, she tells us that “it would be politically impossible to continue to deny a mandate for a second referendum in the face of a Yes win”. Aye! Just as it was “politically impossible” to deny a mandate in the face of all those SNP election wins. Elections which actually were determinative, as opposed to a referendum which is strictly consultative and emphatically non-determinative.
But think for a moment about the wider implications of Mhairi Hunter’s clarification of Nicola Sturgeon’s ‘plan’. She says it would be “politically impossible to continue to deny a mandate for a second referendum in the face of a Yes win”. Which can mean nothing other than that a Yes win in the proposed referendum leaves us in the position of still needing a referendum. Exactly as now. Except that the referendum we will be seeking will no longer be the second one, it’ll be the third. And it can only happen if the UK Government agrees. Which is exactly the position of the SNP/Scottish Government at the moment. A Yes vote in the proposed referendum will have altered nothing but the ordinal number of the referendum we will still be unable to hold because the SNP/Scottish Government accedes to the British state’s authority to deny our right of self-determination. Our own government declines to assert and defend the concept of popular sovereignty. Our own government forsakes the fundamental principle that the people of Scotland are sovereign.
Which DOES NOT mean that we don’t need a Yes vote in this ’empty’ referendum. We absolutely do! All it means is that the Yes vote gains us nothing. But we have to secure that Yes vote because a No vote costs us everything.
And so the deception continues. If it goes ahead, we will all strive to get the biggest Yes vote possible in the proposed referendum. Should we succeed, we will find that nothing has changed. For many, this will be a shock. Because despite the fact that they have been warned and despite the fact that even someone as close to the First Minister as Mhairi Hunter has answered the question of what ensues from a Yes vote, most people prefer the lie that the referendum allows then to “decide their own future”.
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