Clearly, the First Minister’s hope of “clarity and legal certainty in a timely manner” has been frustrated by reality. It was always no more than empty rhetoric anyway. An attempt to justify a plainly foolish ‘strategy’. The complex permutations described by Andrew Tickell are neither new nor newly discovered. It was always the case that “clarity and legal certainty” were not going to be found. I find it hard to believe that Nicola Sturgeon could be unaware of this. Readers will make their own judgement on the honesty of her claim to be seeking something that she knew didn’t exist anywhere other than in the delusions that her loyal followers are happy to embrace.
But all this concern about the legal and political implications of what the UK Supreme Court might proclaim on Wednesday morning is rather beside the point. What surely matters is the process itself rather than what the UKSC says about it. The court’s judgement will not affect the nature of the proposed referendum. It remains a total waste of time we cannot afford to squander regardless of the pronouncements of these judges.
Whichever of the outcomes Andrew Tickell lists actually comes about, the fact remains that even if the proposed referendum goes ahead it will not move us one millimetre closer to restoring our independence. Whatever happens with the referendum; whatever the result, we remain in precisely the same place as we are now. That is to say, awaiting bold, decisive action by a bunch of politicians who have shown themselves to be disinclined to be either bold or decisive even in the face of a real and imminent threat to Scotland’s democracy.
The truth is in the sub-text of Andrew’s article. It is not difficult to understand why he could not be more explicit. Because the truth is that there is no ‘legal’ route to independence. We need no word from the UKSC to know this. We need only understand the imperatives that bear on the British ruling elite and the options available to them in serving these imperatives.
Read this paragraph from Andrew Tickell’s column carefully.
As former Whitehall mandarin Ciaran Martin points out, if the UK Government wants to, then it has a range of legal tools at its disposal to frustrate the process, including a Commons majority to pass legislation to block a second poll. Power devolved is power retained, after all. Would the new prime minister be tempted to use the power Westminster has retained to stymie a poll which the Supreme Court says is lawful?
Not only is there no legal route to independence, there is no possibility of such a route. There is no possibility of a route that the British state will not declare illegal. And even if the British state did ‘allow’ a legal route to independence this would only ever be on the understanding that this route could easily be frustrated at some point.
So long as we accept the British state’s authority in constitutional matters, we cannot restore Scotland’s independence. The only logical conclusion is that we must reject the British state’s authority to deny the right of self-determination guaranteed to the people of Scotland under international law.
I quote Andrew Tickell at length.
Say the Court concludes that the future of the union is subject to a sweeping reservation. Say they find that organising even an advisory referendum lies beyond Holyrood’s reach. For independence supporters, this is perhaps the starkest outcome. Holyrood will be left with no legal means of asking Scots whether they think independence is the form of government best suited to their needs.
There are no appeals to be made, no international courts to be petitioned, no international jurisdiction which applies here. Political pressure is all that remains. But politically, this outcome would pose fundamental questions about the state of the United Kingdom: how voluntary can a union be when you’re told there’s no way out? Independence supporters already feel strongly about this issue. How would the public react?
Does anybody get the impression that the British political elite gives a shit about how the public react? Why would they? The power afforded them by the Union is absolute. It makes no concessions whatever to democracy.
Is not the Draconian, dictatorial power asserted by the British state sufficient reason in itself for the people of Scotland to assert the contrary? When the British state says ‘We have the authority to deny your sovereignty and override your democratic will!’, does that not make it natural and essential the people of Scotland respond by saying ‘No you bloody well don’t!’?
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13 thoughts on “Just say f*** off!”
Reblogged this on Ramblings of a now 60+ Female and commented:
Totally agree with your title, Peter. Westminster can do exactly that.
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Yes, Peter, you put it bluntly, but truthfully. It will have to be UDI, backed with a case before the international court for recognition. Unionists will say: but you had your referendum and we said NO. The majority prevailed. We have to bring out the big guns now and use the Treaty itself and all the workings around the Treaty to show those who would consider UDI to be illegal, that it is perfectly legal for us to withdraw from the Treaty because the Treaty has been broken and breached irretrievably – by one side only. We have stuck to our obligations since 1707. England and then England as the UK has not. No path to independence through devolved power exists, no path to independence while England rules exists. The answer is obvious, or should be: a unilateral declaration of independence, backed by a case to the UN. If the SC rules against Holyrood having the powers to hold a useless referendum that will not succeed, and the SG then goes ahead with plans for a plebiscitary General Election, it will be stymied somehow. Absolutely no doubt now. No, our UDI must be based on our right as a sovereign nation to withdraw from the Union.
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Yes, no, maybe– how the Supreme Court ruling will play out”
To everyone who has been paying attention, none of this will be news.
However, to the general public, who get their ‘news’ from the Privately Owned Media
and the State Propaganda Channel, I doubt that any such analysis will have been spelled out for their consideration.
Not sure how much just painting “Just FUCK OFF” on a plackard will serve to enlighten… 😉
Suggestions for suitable messages are sought. Please give generously! 😉
p.s. Peter I have not been receiving email notifications for some considerable time. Is there any way you can look into this issue for me? Ta.
First things first. Have you checked your spam folder?
The meaning of what is written on our placards will be whatever the readers of those placards take it to be, not what WE want it to mean (and a list of definitions and references wont help either). So they need to convey that sovereignty lies with us (our right to choose our future) and that the power to determine and execute our wishes lies at Holyrood, the SG has our permission to do this, and time is of the essence to restore independence.
Whenever we get the opportunity communicate this to the media and the public we must do it in large numbers and with words clearly and widely understood. I’ll go to Holyrood on Wednesday because there sits the power to enable the expression of our wishes (I’m working on wording for mine but I predict you will find inspiration if you turn up with markers and blank placards. If you are going in a group maybe stand in a line of placards to say the above?)
On reflection, “f*** off” maybe does best convey the meaning.
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Tickell (and co-operative bourgeoisie ‘nationalist'(?) intellectuals always looking for a compromise with colonialism) tends to follow the path Albert Memmi described, in that:
“When explaining the acts of the colonizer, he will offer obscure or Machiavellian rationalizations…”
But, as you suggest, Peter, in the colonial environment this is unnecessary and should be ignored, because:
“…the simple mechanics of colonization are self-explanatory”
Hence it is that F*** Off is always the answer that must ultimately be given to an oppressor, and no matter where it is always that same message, whether in Tunisia, Kenya, Ireland, India or Scotland.
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To all SNP MSPs and SNP Councillors:
Be at one of the 13 or more rallies on Wednesday or totally lose my respect (previous important appointments acceptable – but make your excuses public in advance).
To all SNP MPs:
Organise your own rally outside the UKSC on Wednesday or totally lose my respect.
To the First Minister of Scotland:
Be at the Holyrood rally on Wednesday and talk, not about how great the SNP are blah blah blah, nor “We’ve never been nearer to Independence”, but thanking all those that come to that and other rallies (I’ll be in Glasgow) and with further plans whatever the decision is. Or totally lose my respect.
Wha daur meddle wi’ me
Posted this elsewhere and apparently the SNP have emailed all members urging them to support the rallies. (I’ve never voted Green or Alba so it’s up to their voters to tell them what to do)
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Well, that’s going great so far, it seems that Tommy Sheppard will be going, and, errrr, Tommy Sheppard and ummm, Tommy Sheppard.
Quick twiddle through SNP politicians on Twitter, many ignore the whole thing, some refer to the decision due, and a couple refer to the National article, but only the bit where the SNP urges members to take to the street.
They seem to have conveniently missed this bit:
“Toni Giugliano, the SNP’s policy development convenor, urged both representatives and members to attend the rallies in large numbers and make the day as noteworthy as possible in the eyes of the international media. ”
Still, I daresay the National in a couple of hours will supply us with a list of the dozens of SNP MSPs who” be there, and of course the MPs taking over the UK Parliament at Westminster and kidnapping the Mace! While SNP Councillors man the soup stalls in traditional fashion.
What’s that you said, speak up I can’t hear you …
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I am rather bemused, that anyone thinks these various demos planned for Wednesday will make the slightest bit of a difference.
The English based Court has already made its decision.
It won’t matter what that actually is, as far as getting us closer to Independence.
So then, just what is the point of having these demos, when the decision has been made?
If it rules against Scotland, what do the demonstrators hope to achieve on Wednesday?
And if it rules in favor of Scotland, again, what do they hope for?
The Justices don’t care one bit for the views of the ppl of Scotland.
They will only rule on a strictly Legal basis, and not a political one.
And if it did favor The SNP’s approach, the politicians at Westminster have made it quite clear, they will still try block any proposed Referendum.
Labour has said as much, as has the tories.
But SNP was wrong in the first place to go to the London Court.
In fact, as we have seen these past 8 years, SNP leadership has been wrong in everything around getting us Independent.
The longer SNP prevaricate, and insist on following London rules, the worse it becomes both for them, and for Scotland.
We know we rely on SNP at this moment in time, and SNP know it too, but we get the impression, they are taking advantage of that reliance, and giving us nothing of real use in return.
We are left to wonder just what the hell it will take for SNP to change its stance, because it if doesn’t, or waits too long to do so, the ppl of Scotland will end up condemning them for a total betrayal.
It will be well for SNP not to let that happen!
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Mass events can have benefits for a cause regardless of their stated purpose. This is less true, I suspect, when there is no stated purpose. In effect, the events become less a mass demonstration and more just lots of people demonstrating.
I am not against the rallies. Anything that shows and perhaps even increases the strength of the Yes movement is great, as far as I am concerned. What I worry about is the raising of expectations around the whole matter of the mock referendum – including the judgement of the UKSC. It is all being massively over-hyped for what it is. The high is great. The fall can be exhilarating. But the landing’s aye a bastard.
From the point of view of those already, Gordon, to put it politely, wary of the SNP and Sturgeon it’s one more opportunity to put pressure on them.
But there’s also a mass of people like myself who maintain a careful watch, giving the benefit of the doubt with patience, but expecting action when the time is right.
And whatever the UKSC finding, that time is NOW.
If the SNP don’t attend the rallies, or their MPS don’t walk out of the HoC, or seize the Mace, or introduce one of their allotted opposition Bills about something worthwhile rather than hunting in England FFS – and similarly if the MSPs don’t attend the rallies, introduce the Bill to Holyrood regardless, maybe as a backbencher, then people like me are NOT going to be happy.
That’s one of the reasons for making the attendance as large as possible – the more people there, the more the pressure. On the SNP, on Westminster, on the dreaded BBC, on the Unionists. A few hundred people total over 16 rallies plus 2 in England and 5 in Europe, won’t cut it.
Be there or be square!
There’s no route out of this union that leads through Westminster, there never was and there never will be. Also, there’s no route out of this union whilst Sturgeon is FM, if we want to dissolve this union we’ll need to do it ourselves, but that’s unlikely to happen whilst Sturgeon is in office.
Sturgeon’s record on moving the indy cause forward speaks for itself its utter shite. She’s the unions greatest asset, once she’s out the way, and let’s be honest nothing going to happen with any gravitas on the indyfront until she’s gone, we can then set about breaking Westminster laws to get us out of this union, Sturgeon won’t even bend the rules on a reserved matter never mind break one.
We have to be realistic. Bold decisive action is required before the next UK general election. There is no way to remove Sturgeon before then. Even if there was a way to remove Sturgeon before then it would only be to replace her with someone who favours the same ‘strategy’. It is a pointless distraction to talk about stuff that is outwith the realm of possibility.
It has to be Sturgeon. It has to be the SNP. It has to be within the next few months. That is the situation. We won’t deal with that situation if we refuse to even acknowledge it. A large part of the reason the campaign has stalled and the SNP has got away with stalling it is the pervasive delusion about an ‘alternative’. If fewer people had been fantasising about a ‘supermajority’ and/or international courts and/or the UN and/or people power, then maybe we could have sorted out the problem at the last Holyrood election. That was the time to do it. Elections are when voters have most leverage. But the Yes movement as a whole chose to squander that opportunity.
It might be a good idea to stop squandering opportunities.