Cupar 132

Tonight’s meeting is upstairs at Watts of Cupar (Fife) 7pm. I have been astonished by the wave of popular enthusiasm and above all by the incredible meld of social media activism and old-fashioned street campaigning. The mainstream media have no idea what is going on as, on the rare occasions they try to cover a Yes happening, they are utterly thrown by the absence of men in suits to interview.

The other quite astonishing thing is the level of political radicalism at all the events I have attended. The world should pay attention to Robin McAlpine. In my view, Robin has the ability to become one of the most important contemporary political philosophers not just in Scotland, but in the World. His ideas of future political and social co-operation in more useful forms of economic transaction, and of politics without party structure, are profound. When the campaigning dies down I will discuss further.

Nobody wants simply to repeat Westminster corporate power structures in Scotland. There is a movement happening here which is truly revolutionary and feels like nothing I have experienced in my life before. I am deeply moved. If we achieve independence, it truly will be the victory of the people, not the politicians.


An encounter at the Wellgate Centre Dundee today captured a key aspect of the campaign for me. An old lady refused to take one of our Yes leaflets. She said she was Labour, and that she had been told by the Labour Party that if Independence came, we would let all the foreigners in. I have no doubt she was telling the truth.

The Labour Party – running a Tory funded campaign against the people to try to hang on to their Westminster jobs, and resorting to the racist tactics of UKIP. An absolute moral disgrace.

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132 thoughts on “Cupar

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  • David T

    So the majority of Scots who intend to vote NO (which is an action and does not indicate apathy) belong somehow less to “the people” than those who attend YES campaigning events?

    The YES campaign is everywhere, that’s true…

    …doing desperate things like covering up NO posters with their own (which they’re doing up and down the country)..

    and it’s also completely up itself.

  • Paul

    “Nobody wants simply to repeat Westminster corporate power structures in Scotland.”

    I suspect the higher echelons of the main scottish parties might have a different view, whatever they say to the grassroots.

  • David T

    🙂 But how far can euphoric sunlight go, feeding on itself and talking mainly to itself? NO are still ahead in the polls. Here‘s an interesting article on how YES and NO tend to do in the last month of referendum campaigning. (OK OK, it’s in the Torygraph, the SIS house journal, I know, but some of the analysis by the cited academic is of some value).

  • David T

    It’s not a revolution. A lot of people have put a lot of work into the YES campaign, and many of them have drunk themselves – mostly metaphorically speaking – into thinking that they’re going to hold onto the exhilaration forever. I hope most of them get over it without too much angst when they lose.

  • Mary

    Spotted you on a video of last night’s meeting at The Steps. Jim Sillars was speaking.

  • Abe Rene

    This sounds very interesting, especially if it means that a large number of Yes voters have not been accounted for in the opinion polls. Come 18th September, we’ll no doubt learn the truth.

  • Vronsky

    The huge energy of the left in this is utterly novel. Ordinarily, if you want to contain the left you just leave them alone in a room for ten minutes and they’ll all strangle each other. It’s always been a a zoo of competing theologies.

    But McAlpine isn’t the only name emerging here – there’s Harvie of the Greens looking ever more assured, Shafi and Fox of the Socialists, and a number of powerful women whose position is hard to characterise in conventional terms. The metropolitan media are focused on the result on the 18th of September and seem genuinely unaware that a quite different force has been released.

    Ironically, and with some honourable exceptions, it’s probably only the trolls on your website who see this – which of course is why you have them.

  • Kempe

    ” Ordinarily, if you want to contain the left you just leave them alone in a room for ten minutes and they’ll all strangle each other. ”

    Currently they’re all united towards a common goal, the infighting will start after the referendum.

  • Phil

    Very interesting. I have watched a gaggle of yes speakers on the internet these last few nights and the radical messages are exciting. Makes me wish I was there!

    Good luck with the rest of your tour.

  • Phil

    Craig, Vronksy anyone else

    On what basis is this consensus on the left held together? How do you think it might sustain after a yes vote (when the real battle starts)?

  • Habbabkuk (La vita è bella) !

    Since a Yes vote is supposed to wipe the slate clean, will there be an immediate general election in Scotland in the event of Scotland gaining independence?

    Should there be, in the opinion of commenters?

  • OldMark

    ‘David T, Actually poll coming tomorrow shows a 51% for yes.’

    The link you’ve given, Andy C, appears to be dated 29/01/13.

    If there is a current poll showing a Yes majority, rather than a narrowing lead for the Noes, you should provide a better link.

  • Andy C

    Oldmark, you are correct it’s an old link which I didn’t recognize. Please disregard my statement, I don’t think I can delete it.

  • Trick

    I’ve enjoyed reading your blog over the past few months , and have found it very insightful . I’m trying to find the answer to a simple question , if we vote YES , or is that when . Is the consequence that England become independent by default ? The union between Scotland and England will be over after all .

  • Mary

    This is unattributed in the Mail. I assume it is laughingly called an editorial.

    Be positive… to save our British identity
    30 August 2014

    It began as an ‘eye-catching initiative’ by that constitutional bull-in-a-china-shop, Tony Blair, with his shallow idea that Scottish devolution would defuse the nationalists’ threat to Labour seats.

    But as so many warned, his restoration of the Edinburgh Parliament in 1999, almost three centuries after its dissolution, has had the opposite effect.

    Far from pulling the rug from under the nationalists, it has encouraged separatist feeling and given Alex Salmond a platform from which to stir up resentment.


  • OldMark

    ‘The world should pay attention to Robin McAlpine. In my view, Robin has the ability to become one of the most important contemporary political philosophers not just in Scotland, but in the World.’

    Like(I would guess) most Englishmen, I’d not heard of Robin McAlpine before reading this post from Craig.He’s a leading light in the Jimmy Reid Foundation and, like his deceased mentor, is a brilliant and engaging public speaker (I’ve checked out some of his stuff on you tube). I can see why he gets such a ringing endorsement from Craig; if the Yes team has a few more like him they may well swing it by 18 September.

  • Mary

    and this too. Oh dear! Worthy of Woman’s Own. Is that still around?

    Of whisky, seals and wild swims, and why the fate of Scotland is so deeply personal to David William Donald Cameron
    David Cameron said the rest of the UK wants Scotland to remain onboard
    He said by leaving the UK, Scotland will be forced to exit the EU
    He said the various parts of the UK had separate identities but shared links

  • Tony M

    The 1707 political union stated that both England and Scotland would cease to exist, all would be known as the United Kingdom, of course that never happened in either case, though Scotland was wrongly supposed to have been subsumed in a ‘Greater England/North Britain’ and England clearly continued to exist, as a political entity and as a people. The treaty had set impossible goals and was flagrantly voided by both parties from the word go. Historic, proud nations are not easily erased. Wales at the time of Union a principality of England, is nowadays internationally recognised as a country in its own right, though still integrated with England more tightly, as much earlier, than Scotland ever became. It is really only an issue of what is to become of the Westminster Parliament, will it become again England’s parliament, or will England muddle along as a ‘united’ kingdom of one kingdom? I see Westminster, as a tourist attraction, something like the Bloody Tower only gorier, or as a film set for a historical soap opera, Dowturn Abbey. This whole Kingdom thing is a bit embarassingly antiquated and quaint. Scotland isn’t choosing independence from England, it’s taking back its political and economic powers, given to Westminster for a 300 year trial, which hasn’t worked out at all well. Of course there’ll be an informal civil union continuing and there will always be an England, shorn of splittist London perhaps, with government based in the Midlands or North. It’s a matter for England’s people, how they’ll style themselves in future, “England” has a certain ring to it.

  • Ben

    “..thrown off by men in suits” I didn’t know it had been consigned to dirty fucking hippies, but that seems to be mcAlpines notion.

    “So when each member of the panel in that Westminster committee room were asked to answer the question ‘what can England do to help you?’, my answer was straightforward. Bear witness. We are a grassroots campaign of ordinary people who have been accused of the most awful behaviours and attitudes. Look and listen to us. Do we really seem like fascists to you? Is Neil Ascherson an English-hating zealot? Is Joyce McMillan covered in Scotland the Brave tattoos, hollering freedom? Is Cat Boyd contemptuous of the poor of England? Is David Greig a knuckle-dragging Neanderthal?”

  • M4rkyboy

    I have to agree on the rise of Robin McAlpine during the last few years.He has been inspirational and surely must be a future FM in waiting.

  • rich

    Craig, I really hope Scotland wins independence and that you become the Scottish Foreign Secretary!

  • Ben

    “Ordinarily, if you want to contain the left you just leave them alone in a room for ten minutes and they’ll all strangle each other. It’s always been a a zoo of competing theologies.”

    Yes. Why is that? Conservatives seem much better at concealing their differences and closing ranks around a single theme. They’ve started breaking ranks more lately. Sign of the Times?

  • jermynstreetjim

    Craig,(addressing your august allusion to Robin McAlpine) Isobel Lindsay’s wee boy, Robin, is a very articulate, intense and impassioned (bordering on near paroxysms of parlance and oratory) interlocutor for the Brave New Caledonia, which is up for grabs, come the 18th September. The trouble with his (and theirs) Nordic Model aspirations, however, is that he and they (notwithstanding the recent, and inevitable, fissiparous developments, characterizing the respective personnel in the Reid Foundation & Common Weal) are under the misapprehension, that any (unlikely)post-Referendum, ‘Yes’ mandate for a more progressive and egalitarian model for governance, overlooks the stark fact (in our opinion), The Scot’s, collectively, have struggled to move on from the ramifications of their own 400 year old, ‘renaissance’ & reformation, whose legacy still continues to pollute and poison the body politic, north of Hadrian’s Wall. Also, the endemic and intrenched, parochial nature of the average Scot, precludes them, from laying claim to any comparable credentials, with, for example, Scandinavia’s citizenry, whose Swedish, Norwegian, Icelandic, Finnish & Danish citizenry, exude an understated and self-assured enlightenment, which is seldom evident, in Salmond’s Athens of The North/Shortbread City, or it’s more gregarious and generous, Sister City, on The Clyde. There may exist pockets of more purposeful, and promising potential, up in Perthshire, and the like, but such privileged and peaceful repositories of genteel and urbane manners and mindset, are unrepresentative of the more typical, aggressive, agitated and apoplectic demographic, which personifies large numbers of it’s citizenry, in the major conurbations. In conclusion, The Nordic Model is fine as an example of a more tolerant and visionary,forward-looking, Societal template, but the raw material which comprises the curmudgeonly complexions to be found here in many of Scotland’s Inner-City areas such as Fred Goodwin’s, birthplace of Paisley, or Tom Farmer’s Leith, leave a lot to be desired, notwithstanding the odd token, Civic stunts/enterprises, such as truncated Tram Service/s….. !

  • Habbabkuk (La vita è bella) !

    The President of the European Council, Herman van Rompuy, is not the most charismatic of men but was at least able to communicate fluently and effectively – knocking heads (often Heads) together, press briefings after European Councils, high level meetings with people and bodies both within and outwith the EU – in fluent English, French, German and of course his native Flemish.

    I look forward to his designated monoglot successor, Polish PM Donald Tusk, being able to do the same (not). 🙂

  • Habbabkuk (La vita è bella) !

    And still on people:


    Would you please find out forthwith whether the genial Robin McAlpine, of whom mention above, is in any way related to the late Lord McAlpine of non-paedophile fame? If so, please supply a genealogical tree.

    Thank you.

  • Maxter

    Off topic but I have read recently that the Scottish government are boycotting all Russian cultural events. I take it they are playing poodle to the Westminster lies regarding Ukraine.
    Anyone know if this is true or not?
    Thanks in anticipation.

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