I have squandered my resistancefor a pocket full of mumbles such are promisesAll lies and jests These lines from the Simon & Garfunkel song The Boxer were playing on a loop in my head when I awoke this morning. I dismissed it as just one of those 'earworms' that we all get from time to … Continue reading A pocket full of mumbles
The Scots Government should in the court action challenge the very existence of the legal power of Westminster to say no to indyref2, by plainly asserting that the democratic legitimacy of Holyrood trumps that of the Westminster Parliament over Scots affairs, giving it Holyrood the legal authority to hold an independence referendum.Scott Crichton Styles This … Continue reading The legal and the political
My heart lifted slightly when I caught sight of Richard Walker's latest column in The National. For a moment I thought he was about to break ranks and suggest a change of approach to the constitutional issue by Nicola Sturgeon. Perhaps I fooled myself in my eagerness to have someone of Richard's standing add their … Continue reading Bombarded!
We are all aware of how that fateful phrase 'once in a generation' has come to haunt Scotland's cause. I don't doubt there are times when both Alex Salmond and Nicola Sturgeon wish they'd never offered up that particular hostage to fortune. What makes it truly regrettable is that they could easily have left it out. It wasn't essential. There are other ways of saying the same thing. Not so with the word 'supermajority'. It's not a throwaway remark. It refers to a very specific concept. A concept which is very much part of this election campaign. There isn't really an alternative. There may be other ways of saying the same thing. But none, I suspect, that wouldn't sound painfully contrived. We're stuck with it now.
"Here is what we know. A majority SNP government will hold a referendum within the term of the next parliament."Richard Walker: This is why Both Votes SNP is best way to ensure independence But we don't know this, Richard. That is a very large part of the problem. In your very next sentence you refer … Continue reading What a mess!
In reality, the nuance in this instance is not all that subtle. It's actually quite easy to imagine circumstances in which Boris Johnson might do a U-turn on his adamant opposition to a new referendum. Bear with me and I'll explain.
In all of this the British government would be arguing against relevant provisions of the UN Charter and various UN declarations and internationally accepted conventions. It is entirely possible that the prospect would be too daunting for them.
Arguably the most deleterious effect of descent into a cult of personality (or personalities) is that the rightness or wrongness of the decisions ceases to be the issue. Reasoned and reasonable debate about the choices being made becomes impossible when the only thing that matters is the identity of the individual making those choices.
My hope is that Now Scotland will use the opportunity of its 6 March assembly to debate and vote on resolutions relating to the constitutional issue. I think it would do Scotland a great service if it were organised as a kind of mock party conference. I would like to see it staging the debates that should be taking place at the SNP's conference.
Plan C proposes that, having repudiated the Section 30 process as an affront to democracy, the SNP should include in the party's manifesto for the coming Holyrood elections a commitment that if elected an SNP Scottish Government will immediately assert the exclusive competence of the Scottish Parliament in all constitutional matters preparatory to proposing the dissolution of the Union subject to a referendum that shall be entirely made and managed in Scotland.