Sturgeon's technique is like a magic trick. It fascinates only so long as you can't figure out how it's done. Once the mechanics of it become apparent, all you see is the machinery. You may still admire the slickly oiled machinery with all its smoothly meshing gears and silently spinning flywheels and perfectly tensioned springs. But the magic is gone. There is a sense of loss at its vanishing. But there is also a feeling of release.
If it is merely by discussing the Sturgeon inquiries that "we" are "enabling" the Tories to use those inquiries to attack devolution then presumably the theory is that the attacks would be disabled were "we" to stop discussing them. But that's not quite right, is it? Not unless the idea is that it that it is only "our" discussions that are doing the enabling rather than discussion in general of the Nicola Sturgeon affair. That hardly seems credible.
These two giants of Scottish politics divide the independence movement because each is a repository of hope. Hope is the common factor here. Desperate hope. Quite possibly delusional hope. Hope that is no more than a dully glowing ember. Hope that still burns with a bright flame. Hope for the dream that will never die - but which can all to easily be thwarted by disunity, disharmony and despair.
There being two such solidly entrenched camps it is likely that the Salmond versus Sturgeon formulation will become an established part of our political discourse for some time to come. The legends of both 'combatants' will grow as required to keep respective camp-followers on board. History may well tell a tale of current events that will be barely recognisable to those of us living through them.
I have seen numerous comments which imply - at the very least - that one or both of the current inquiries is an instrument of Alex Salmond's retribution.
The case of Alex Salmond is an exemplary instance of a smear which simply disregarded all the rules.
The same series of events. Two different and contradictory accounts. How can both be true? For the most part the events themselves are not in dispute. Some details such as dates and times may be disputed. But mostly the events are a matter of public record and accepted by both sides. The argument is over whether the events involved the kind of orchestration that would amount to a conspiracy. Alex Salmond sees that level of orchestration. Nicola Sturgeon does not.
There are lies and liars in Scottish politics just as there are in politics the world over. Just as there are in life. And all of life is politics. Politics, as I have noted previously, is the management of power relationships. All human interactions at every level from the interpersonal to the international are transactions in the currency of power. We are all doing politics all of the time. We are simply accustomed to calling it politics only when it come to matters of public policy and the people charged with formulating and implementing public policy. All of life is politics. All of living is doing politics. And where there is politics there is dishonesty.
Rule number one in conflict resolution - don't tell people to calm down.
Joanna Cherry cherry has earned the virulent hatred of this clique not by betraying the the principles on which the SNP was founded but for upholding them. Not for flouting the standards which the party is supposed to operate but for insisting on them. Not for a lack of integrity but for having integrity in a measure which embarrassed too many who today are responsible for managing the party's affairs. Not because she is unpopular with 'ordinary' members but because she is so detested by those jealous and fearful of that popularity.