Serial Reject 150

I have just been rejected at vetting (again) by the SNP and therefore cannot put myself forward to fellow members as a potential parliamentary candidate. This time they added the somewhat gratuitous comment that I would not only be “unbecoming” as a parliamentary candidate, but as a member. They also suggested, in writing, that I owe a public apology to senior figures in the party. I have written back to ask to whom and why (I really have no idea). I have not received any reply to that yet. I have received a reply to a second query, and am told that the “unbecoming” comment does not indicate any desire or expectation that I should resign membership. Indeed they say they hope my contribution will continue, but as my sole contribution appears to be as a whipping-boy I can’t quite see why I should share that hope.

You will forgive my posting some videos which I think explain the case for my defence:

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Obviously this all causes me to think long and hard about my future political effort. My key focus is ensuring that neither excessive caution nor that most insidious temptation, managerialism and the comfort of power and office, prevents an early second referendum. It is very easy to convince yourself that you are doing good in your taxpayer-paid job. Status is seductive. The SNP is full of siren voices arguing that they should enjoy their spoils for a decade or two while maintaining a steady trudge towards independence. They whisper that we have to await a 60% Yes lead in the opinion polls before we try again as another defeat would be disastrous.

But the greater danger is that the momentum fades. You would have to be the greatest optimist in the World to imagine a more favourable conjunction of circumstances for Independence than an extremist Tory government at Westminster, a Labour Party in meltdown, the Liberals almost eliminated and the SNP supreme in Scotland. Plus the residue of the huge momentum of the IndyI campaign, which put on 14 points in 12 months.

This dream conjunction will not last forever. The great danger is letting the moment slip through our fingers. If pro-Indy candidates sweep Holyrood, having already swept Westminster, we would be quite entitled to declare independence without a referendum. As I repeat till I am blue in the face, the majority of countries in the world have become independent states in my own lifetime, and the vast majority of those without a referendum. There is no legal requirement for one, and it is essential that we retain the threat of UDI in case Cameron tries to refuse a referendum; otherwise we are accepting a Westminster veto on the will of the Scottish people.

A referendum in 2018 must be the goal, with the threat of UDI should Cameron refuse. That is what I want to work for. I am only an individual, actively disowned by the party of Scottish government. But nonetheless I shall dedicate my energies to this goal.

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150 thoughts on “Serial Reject

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  • nevermind

    I must say standing as an independent in NE Scotland does sound quite tempting, though I would have to leave the SNP which I still think has to be the vehicle to independence.

    Their vehicle is full of cap duffers already. I hope that the SNP has mechanism for a percentage based appanage of their salary to the party, to stay Independent from large donors who at a later date want their palms greased.

    If they don’t ask for such contribution they will end up in the pockets of lobbyists, get fat on taxes and forget what it was they wanted to do after all.
    What is the important goal? to sit in Westminster trying to get into Government, by the looks with the Tories, a ‘naturally occurring default’, or to press on with another referendum given the state of a rapidly breaking up Union.

  • nevermind

    “But more to the point does anyone know why the SNP is so hell bent on taking Scotland out of the EU on independence (it would be automatic) and so enraged that England might do it for them?”

    What is the evidence for this assumption?, Peter, surely the mandate for such exit does not exist yet, not for the SNP or here in the UK, so those who talk it up should really be challenged as to Scotland’s future economic prospects and performance with EU countries.

    Norway and Switzerland pay to be part of it, Scotland is slightly bigger than the two and would also have to pay to sell there, should the SNP really want to bypass such a large market on its doorstep in favour of??? what exactly?

  • John Goss

    This is where would-be politicians, and decent people, like Craig go wrong. They follow their consciences. Whereas those who succeed and go on to lead, while being intelligent and articulate are largely without conscience. Benito Mussolini apparently carried a copy of Machiavelli’s The Prince around with him.

    This is one of the front-running Repubican candidates, Herr Trump.

  • John Spencer-Davis

    I just received this e-mail from a very highly-placed and well-known member of the Labour Party.

    “Hello comrade! (We can still say that can’t we?) I’m going to break the habit of a lifetime and be brief. This leadership election is nearly over, and it looks like it’s down to a choice between Jeremy Corbyn and Andy Burnham. I was glad I encouraged MPs to nominate Jeremy to get him into this race because we really needed a debate on Labour’s future.

    And what a debate it’s been! People are flocking to meetings, our number of members and supporters has tripled and there’s a buzz about Labour again. But now you need to decide who’s the best person to lead us back to power in 2020. And for me, that person is Andy Burnham. From progressive renationalisation of our railways to integrating social care into our NHS, Andy has the ideas, experience and passion to unite this party and put our traditional values in a modern setting. We need a leader who won’t just lead protests ON Downing Street. Andy’s the best candidate to march us back INTO Downing Street. Because if we don’t choose a leader who can win in 2020, we’ll give the Tory’s another five years of misrule to hit the poor and dismantle everything we achieved in Government.

    So if you haven’t yet, please vote for Andy today.

    The future of our country and our party depends on it. And you’ll make me happy too!

    Thank you and enjoy your bank holiday.”

    To which I sent the following reply:

    “Good morning to you, comrade.

    Doesn’t that make you a moron?

    Do you agree with John McTernan that you are a moron? And that all the MPs that you encouraged to nominate Jeremy Corbyn MP in order to have a debate are morons also? Margaret Beckett MP apparently agrees that she is a moron.

    Do you?

    Do you think that that is the way that one highly regarded member of the Labour Party should describe others?

    If you are the moron that Margaret Beckett concurs that she and presumably everyone else who did what she did is, why should I pay the slightest attention to who you are backing or what you think should be the result of the contest?

    I hope you have a pleasant Bank Holiday also.”

    Kind regards,


  • fedup

    FAO Craig,

    Sorry to read about your rejection!

    You should know that speaking your mind and having a mind of your own is a dangerous predisposition in the British brand (Scottish included) of politics. The grandees sitting on judgment usually have their own directions and “agenda” (I love this crappy euphemism for prejudice and assumptions).


    Craig It would be appreciated if you can clarify the reasons for the serial deletion of my comments in the last thread? (please don’t say this is a new thread, as my comment in the same thread highlighting this fact to Nevermind was deleted too!)

    Is the reason for serial deletions of my comments in the last thread your serial rejection by the SNP? (kind of a bad day in the office syndrome)

    On the other hand is it the new moderator bent on shaping up the place to his/her own visions, post the DOS attack that has now resulted in a decision to get rid of the likes of me, for being so vociferously antizionist?

    PS. I linked to a video of a armed zionist supremacist thug in uniform (this has been so assiduously ignored by the oligarch owned media), showing the said verminous thug attempting to kidnap a ten year old Palestinian boy with one arm in plaster, whilst manifestly trying and failing to break or damage the boy’s other good arm!

    PPS I know the moderation is arbitrary and final, however to see the messages that have been in response to my deleted comments in place are shades of Jon the Mod with his skewed moderation based on his imperatives.

    PPPS suppression of the facts does not become a whistleblowers blog, if you don’t wish me to comment here all you need to do; is say so, no need for any of the smoke and mirrors faceless moderator deleting my comments serially!

    Thanks in advance

  • lawrenceab

    Craig, I like many in these posts am a sincere admirer of your honesty, principles, clarity of thought and your ability to make us understand the devious workings of the establishment as only a former insider can. The last quality in particular makes you dangerous to Establihment insiders.

    However I concur with the majority who tell you that you are not cut out for the SNP or for any other large party – and by now sufficient feathers have been ruffled to make your attempt to represent them a non-starter. So just drop it.

    What I wish to say is: firstly, save your energy and ammo for a try at Westminster 2020. You will be far far more valuable to us all there. In a SNP dominated Holyrood, even if you get in as an Independent, you will become so aggravated and ornery having to deal with the SNP machine that you will burn out!

    Secondly, try to mend bridges with SNP (or with the Greens or SSP) and with the tacit backing of a Party organisation, stand as an Independent for Berwick-upon-Tweed. SNP have made no decision to stand in own name south of the border, not are they likely to. Yet to tweak Westminster’s nose by supporting a SNP-friendly independent in Berwick might be very tempting! After all, which Scot will deny Berwick is rightly part of Scotland? If you can get them to back you with a few tasty policies, such as granting free university tuition to residentially-qualified Berwickian students, etc. your campaign could be quite effective. You won’t be competing with any other SNP or SSP candidates, and you have four years to prepare this. Of course you’d have to move there at least part-time. I am sure a small army of your supporters will work on this with you. Once in Westminster you can let rip, protected by Parliamentary privilege. WM establishment wil be horrified!

  • Blair paterson

    The SNP in my opinion do not want independence just yet the way they keep a low profile on things like the lies that are told about them and personal insults to certain individuals , make me doubt their urgency for freedom I hear Nicola has said they will wait till they get a 55to 60 per cent lead in the polls before they call another referendum well the pollsters will make sure that never happens now that she has revealed her plans OT to Fred I would say as to trident do you think the jobs are worth the risk to lives of millions of people I certainly don’t

  • Rir

    It is surely as embarrassing to hang around a party that has rejected you as it is to hang around a woman that will never be your lover. Supporting its cause is like sending her gifts she may enjoy but will certainly resent receiving from you. Moreover, if your aim is to promote socialist ideals on the widest scale, for which you say independence is merely proxy, then the natural course of action now is to support Corbyn, who has all the virtues of the SNP with none of their vice.

  • Clydebuilt

    @Blair Patterson ……’s not just the SNP trying to halt the rush for another referendum, Caroline Leckie (ex Scottish Socialist Party) today’s National “Rush for a new referendum would be a big mistake”………..”SNP cannot win independence without support from broader YES movement” . Putting my faith in the leaders who got us to the Referendum…………… Indy Ref 2 ain’t a coin burning a hole in your pocket for a bag of sweets .

  • writeon

    I wonder, does the core leadership of the SNP even actually want full independence for Scotland? Aren’t they perhaps content to enjoy, what they might perceive, as the best of both worlds?

  • fred

    “Fred I would say as to trident do you think the jobs are worth the risk to lives of millions of people I certainly don’t”

    As a member of NATO Britain is committed to spending 2% of GDP on defence. I don’t much like the thought of it being spent on bombs to drop on Middle Eastern countries and planes to drop them. The money is better spent on things that will never be used as far as I’m concerned.

  • Suzanne

    Craig, if they rejected you last time, and you went very loudly public with it, why would you expect them to accept you this time round? Many people put themselves forward, often with peerless credentials, yet many are rejected. Personally, I wasn’t impressed by your going public the last time – many others who were rejected had the dignity to accept the decision and not use a public platform to vent about it.

    Why should you be accepted? Is there a reason you feel you should be accepted above others? You’ve done some excellent work, I agree, but that’s not the be all and end all of what a candidate should bring to the table, and it’s not a get-in-free ticket.

    I’m surprised that you put yourself forward again, and I wonder why you did. It must have been obvious that you would be rejected again, and this gives you another chance to kick the SNP on a public forum, claiming to be hard done by. In which case, they were right to reject you because your personal needs appear to trump the party’s political aims.

    Good luck in the future.

  • craig Post author


    Were I to lose a vote by members in a constituency I would have no complaint whatsoever. But to be debarred by a panel of entirely undistinguished people who have done much less for independence than me is another thing altogether.

  • Endemic

    Sadly this tale is not unique. It is only a matter of time before party HQ are unable to keep a lid on the fury at branch level regarding selection process. Eastwood constituency is embroiled in civil war after a completely rigged selection process where any potential opponents were snuffed out at vetting on ‘evidence’ provided by acolytes of the existing west of scotlnd list mp. Even as a ‘sole nominee’ he had to round up members never seen at a meeting for years to win the room 59 to 50. He has alienated 90% of grass roots activists.
    The renfrewshire south candidate is being investigated for electoral fraud and misuse of members data to win.
    Uddingston and bellshill allegations of vote rigging.
    And hqs response? Shut up and suck it up or leave!
    The lids gonna blow soon in many branches!

  • Jon

    Sorry to hear the SNP is still taking this line, Craig – at the very least they could explain their reasoning.

    I recall you suggested in the last month or two that, after independence, you might join another party, and I wondered at that time whether that was wise to mention in public. Or did I misunderstand those comments? To be a parliamentary candidate in most mainstream parties, does one generally not have to demonstrate a undying level of commitment? 🙂

  • Jives


    Dont matter if its SNP,Labour,Tories whoever…

    You are a danger to any party because you tell the truth ahead of any given party line.

    Be proud of that.

  • jdman

    “Baggage handler at Heathrow John Bedford,claimed he went for his break and when he returned the case mysteriously appeared from nowhere.”

    So this handler who was probably the best memory man ever (won every prize on the conveyor belt in the generation game) comes back from a break and in the baggage trolly he notices a BROWN (Jesus he’s good)suitcase that WASN’T there before and isn’t even a little suspicious as why it suddenly appeared?
    what was his name, INcurious George?

  • ben

    Woah that’s pretty damning of the SNP. Very disappointing, Craig you are EXATLY what that party needs. It seems they have already become too used to those comfy seats and all the cake they can eat. I Honestly thought they would have more balls than this.

  • Roderick Russell

    The system is about political parties not Members of Parliament. As you know, no party, not even those with a large majority in Parliament, gains a majority of the votes and nearly all governments are minorities amongst the people. There is no room for individual thought by MP’s under such a system. What is wanted by all parties are automatons who will toe the party line without exception, and not people of independent mind who might actually contribute something. It is sad that we don’t have a liberal democracy except in pretense but there it is.

  • Andy Nimmo

    Like so many others on here, I implore you to either start your own party or stand as an Independent.
    We cannot afford to lose talent such as yours.
    To lose it to the ‘mealy-mouthed’ establishment brigade would be sacrilegious.
    To me it is no coincidence that the surge in support for Corbynoccured within 24 hours of Mhairi Black’s maiden speech.
    Much as I love Mhairi to bits, I can’t rid myself of the feeling that she will have been told off by ‘the powers’ for her honesty and integrity.

  • Jemand

    Many countries became independent without a referendum for several reasons – 1. The overwhelming popularity of independence obviated a requirement of formal public approval, 2. The forces against independence were sufficiently powerful to ensure their preferred outcome in favour of the negative, and 3. The humanitarian need for independence was urgent. In some cases, like that of East Timor, all three of these reasons were manifest while indpendence for Scotland has no good reason to bypass public consent.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    If the SNP will not come to Mohammed, perhaps Mohammed should go to the SNP? Politics is the art of the possible. Etc.

  • Macky

    If the Brigade 77 will not come to Ba’al, perhaps Ba’al should go to Brigade 77? Propaganda is the art of the Bias. Etc. ;]

  • Great Brittan

    Please be patient. The scale of the task you’ve set yourself is equivalent to the dissolution of the Soviet Union – it’s the same terminal rot and elite degeneracy, and the same desperate repression. Now think about who dissolved the Soviet Union. It took refuseniks like you, men of conscience who delegitimized the state, but it also took the Центральный экономико-математический институт. The SNP are the latter, obsequious reformers promoting careerist aspirations with some trivial new wrinkle in a failed ideology. They too will help destroy this moribund state. To free Scotland you only need to poison the British state with peace, development, rule of law and an end to impunity. The whole world is helping to poison the British junta. You’ve got to give the poison time to work.

  • Dr Jim

    You were not selected and likely never will be, now I’m only an ordinary member of the SNP and I wouldn’t touch you with someone else’s barge pole
    It’s perfectly obvious what you’re about and if I can see it a mile off the party have much cleverer people than me
    Eventually to those whom you would seek to convince, you will, as they say, become transparent

    Stop It

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