Moving Forward 78


AUOB continues its heroic work in trying to weld together the disparate forces of the Yes movement, including the SNP. It is vital that we do pull together as it will take the entire Yes movement to get us over the line to Indy. AUOB is to be congratulated in securing top level SNP support for a virtual Assembly on 14 November, at which SNP Westminster leader Ian Blackford will speak alongside wider movement figures such as Lesley Riddoch, George Kerevan and Robin Mcalpine, plus the more open face of the SNP, Kenny Macaskill. The Assembly on 14 November is an online event, and you can sign up for it here. There have of course been a number of efforts to unite the disparate elements of the Yes movement, but I feel this may turn out to be the most hopeful initiative. Neil Mackay of AUOB in particular is to be commended for his indefatigable behind the scenes work and diplomacy.

Less behind the scenes and more front stage, today we must commend another hero of endless perseverance, Martin Keatings, who yesterday won a key procedural ruling enabling his crowd-funded hearing on the legality of an Independence referendum without S30 permission from Westminster finally to go ahead. The case has been subject to massive obstruction not just from Westminster but from the Scottish government itself. No, that is not a mistype. The “respectable” argument the Scottish Government has deployed is that the petitioners are usurping the power of the Parliament in asking for a ruling on the legality of a referendum which the Parliament has not voted to hold. It is for the Scottish government, not the plebs, to ask if it has the power to hold a referendum without Boris Johnson’s permission.

The catch is, of course, that the Scottish government has no intention of asking the question as the status quo gives a perfect excuse to do nothing on Independence while remaining firmly in power on the backs of Independence supporters.

My own view is that Keatings and his backers in Forward as One are absolutely right to try to try to move the prospects for a referendum forward, and to clear up the legal ambiguity. But I should add that, even if the court rules that in UK domestic law Westminster permission is still needed for Scotland to hold a referendum on Independence, that has no effect on international law and the Scottish people’s absolute right of self-determination.

I suspect if Keatings wins his case, the Tories will immediately move to change the law at Westminster specifically to make referenda on Independence, or on all reserved matters, illegal. But that in itself would precipitate a crisis to which the Scottish Government would be obliged to respond. In short, I continue to see no downside to Keatings’ actions and plenty of upsides.

Finally may I ask any SNP members who have not yet done so to nominate me to stand for party President. You need to go to SNP.org and log in with your membership number. Then go to My Account top right, then elections and then nominations.

It is a two stage process. Those who receive 100 nominations go forward for election. Any party member can nominate but only Conference delegates will be able to vote. To vote you need to contact your branch secretary and say you wish to be a conference delegate (it is an online event). I believe almost all branches have plenty of spare delegate slots available. I understand it is also still possible to join or rejoin online to support me. Many thanks indeed to all those who have done so to date.

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78 thoughts on “Moving Forward

  • Mist001

    The thing about AUOB is that it’s not a political movement nor does it seem to have any aspirations towards becoming a political movement. I’ve read their hugely overstated claims about the numbers who turn up to their marches and all of them can be taken with a pinch of salt. If they really had these numbers and the political intention, can you imagine what change they could bring about if they took those numbers and marched on Bute House for example?

    AUOB is simply a social organisation for like minded people to march, sing songs then go to the pub afterwards and pat each other on the back, telling each other how great their day out was.

    • craig Post author

      You have no idea what you are talking about.
      I marched at the front of their first Edinburgh march, gave a speech at the rally, and then went to the Kilderkin pub on the route of the march which was then still coming past an hour and a half after I had first passed that pub. It continued to pass that pub for a further two hours – that is three and a half hours to pass a point.
      Now stop your patronising nonsense..

      • Banglong

        I’m not Scottish, I’m not even British but I’ve read your books ‘n blogs, I admire your work on Assange and I’d paint my face blue and vote for you any day!

        • Photios

          Don’t waste your money on paint.
          Just hold your breath long enough
          and your face will turn blue… 🙂

    • JOML

      Mist001, I’ve been to two marches and did not pat anyone on the back – but did complain how such large numbers can be completely ignored by MSM and politicians. I’ll now bracket you with MSM, given you appear to swallow their pish.

      • Mist001

        Well with social distancing, people will be able to actually count how many people are on their marches instead of taking their jumped up numbers. The last one varied between 80,000 and 100,000 according to organisers!

        So again, if it was or had intentions of becoming a political movement, why don’t the organisers take these numbers, swarm Charlotte Square and protest outside Bute House? That would certainly guarantee MSM attention and the police couldn’t possibly arrest 100,000 people.

        Or is asking that question patronising nonsense too? Nobody else in the independence ‘movement’ asks that question, the participants certainly don’t.

        They don’t do that because it’s a social organisation for people to recreate the feelings of hope and euphoria from 2014, nothing more, nothing less. It’s not even a tiger, let alone a toothless one.

        • Meghan

          It wouldn’t be possible for 100,000 people to ‘storm Bute House’. Transit routes would all be blocked before they got within 20 miles.

        • JOML

          Mist001, social distancing wasn’t an issue at time these large marches occurred. There may come a time when organisers may attempt to control the large numbers for some form of civil unrest, providing teeth to the currently “toothless” set up you describe. Whatever happens, I’ll rely on you being on the sidelines beating your gums, with your teeth on your keyboard.

        • Ron Soak

          “They don’t do that because it’s a social organisation for people to recreate the feelings of hope and euphoria from 2014, nothing more, nothing less. It’s not even a tiger, let alone a toothless one.”

          Well I don’t know about anyone else but that’s certainly convinced me. If the misty eyed one says something is true and representative of the reality in his own head then it must be so.

          Who needs actual substantive evidence any more? The reality based community is so modernist. Who needs ’em in the post modernist nirvana where people simply create their own reality to suit their spoilt little student politics level ego’s?

          And there we were all those years back thinking The Specials were singing about Reagan and Thatcher? Seems Terry Hall had been looking into his industry issue Balls Crystal 1A thirty odd years into the future when they were considering the state of the asylum.

          Seems like the Stan’s from Monty’s Python have taken over the world.

          • Mist001

            Well, what have AUOB actually done to advance the cause of independence? As someone said above, they don’t even make the MSM. Name one tangible thing they’ve done regarding independence.

          • Ron Soak

            They’ve got off their arses and organised. Actually connecting with each other and people across the movement rather than sitting isolated and alone in the dark handling themselves.

        • Mist001

          Wouldn’t catch me dead on one of these marches. I have a different social life where I don’t march through streets chanting and achieving nothing.

          • Franc

            To Mr Mistoo,

            ” Wouldn’t catch me dead…..etc “

            Dear Mr Mistoo, I couldn’t help but notice that, on closer inspection, of your carte – de – viste, or image, you truely do resemble a ghoul or a member of the undead. This being the case, do you think it is your place, to offer opinions on things belonging to this earthly realm?

    • BrianFujisan

      Mist
      I’v been on several All Under One Banner Marches…The Media Ignore, Downplay the Numbers, FIVE Points –

      !, The AUOB Marches are HUGE – 200,000 on the Edinburgh march

      2, The Marches are 100% peaceful… the only Abuse comes fro 12 / 20 Unionists.

      3, ZERO Arrests EVER…Bearing in Mind the Numbers

      4, TOP Quality Speakers
      Talking Sense – at the Rallies – None of the Westminster / BBC / Media Lies.

      5, It’s always Fun Too…As the Video Below Shows Perfectly – I believe the police had to move this Impromptu Ceilidh on…Because the Dancing was Kinda holding up the March.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VoGC__ySbTA

      • Wee CB from Dumfriesshire

        The numbers are massive at the marches and aren’t ignored by mainstream media actually – I know the BBC News website grudgingly covers it as do other well known media outlets and the news. I was at the march in Glasgow earlier in the year where the ceilidh happened, I was watching it with my mate Cher who came with me and the weather was horrendous. It didn’t dampen anyone’s spirits and everyone had a good time given that the rain was torrential and it was so windy. Cher and I got there about an hour or so after the march started and we still managed to join it from the start at Kelvingrove and do the whole walk – Cher had hurt her hip and wasn’t sure if she was up to it but on the day she was all let’s do this! I brought my Polish pal Aggy to one of the Edinburgh marches and rallies and she was very moved by how pro Europe they are. I said we absolutely want you here and here’s the proof. No rest until Yes.

  • Michael Droy

    On the assumption that Scotland can achieve two referendums in a generation, what happens when the EU question gets raised?

    How does Scotland re-join the EU when almost all trade goes through the rest of UK?

    • Republicofscotland

      Lets see a market of over 500 million folk and growing or a market of 50 million folk, hmm… also is time Scotland used its Eastern sea ports to export to Europe, why send cargo via England to Europe.

      • Kempe

        Possibly because Scotland doesn’t have any ports big enough to handle modern container ships. Probably cheaper to take stuff by road or rail to the Chunnel or Southampton anyway.

        • Republicofscotland

          Well that’s a problem that will need to be rectified, especially with Kent becoming a lorry park.

        • A2

          Grangemouth and Greenock already do with Grangemouth due to double capacity and they aren’t the only deep water ports, I don’t suppose you’ve noticed we aren’t landlocked?

          • Kempe

            Greenock’s on the west coast and Grangemouth, Scotland’s largest port, can currently only take ships up to 187 metres long and 7.5 metres draught. The latest container ships are 400 metres long and draw 10 metres. There are plans to enlarge Grangemouth, the money just has to be made available.

            Scapa Flow is far too remote.

          • J Galt

            Even if an independent Scotland berths constructed the berths we are too far off the beaten track for the really big box boats – the big hubs of Hamburg, Rotterdam, Antwerp, Felixstowe, Southampton will continue to attract the bulk of the trade – we should concentrate on having good feeder links to these hubs.

            Once the west of Scotland’s manufacturing base collapsed in the late 1960s/70s the Port of Clyde declined dramatically – the liner trades had largely gone by the early 70s because there was increasingly nothing to uplift except Whisky.

            Now it’s easier just to put the Whisky in a container in Coatbridge and rail it down to Felixstowe, Southampton or London Gateway in 10 hours or so where you have access to a huge variety of international box boat services.

            These logistical facts will not change much even with independence.

          • nevermind

            Faslane will be perfect. They should start ptepring plans for when the subs leave so they can start instantly.

          • Alf Baird

            Hub and spoke systems depend on the nodes having ‘intermediacy’ rather than ‘centrality’. This means a hub can be an intermediate location enroute to more central locations. Around the world there are many such transhipment hubs, and they do not need to be near cities or areas of demand.

            There are quite a lot of large containerships heading Transatlantic via the Pentland Firth channel. This is because it is a shorter route to Canada and US East & Gulf Coast, especially if last port call in the North Europe rotation is in North Germany. Some of these services continue via Panama to Asia and Australiasia.

            Some container ships enter the North Sea via Dover Strait and exit via Pentland Firth, and vice versa. Large vessels ex Baltic may also route via Pentland Firth. hence not all ships always transit via Dover Str. which is a highly congested channel often involving slower vessel speeds and queuing.

            There is also already a partial feeder network transiting the Pentland Firth, with Icelandic, Greenlandic, Baltic and Russian vessels connecting with a wide range of European destinations incl UK.

            I have not even mentioned Trans-Arctic traffic, which is becoming more frequent and with a longer season.

            A further development with the ‘mega-ships’ of 20,000 TEU+ is the fact these vessels are better suited to keeping to oceanic systems, avoiding shallow seas and narrow estuaries where possible.

            Part of the role of offshore transhipment terminals is to intercept trade for a range of countries, and to speed up the transfer of empty containers between areas of demand. Hence a hub at Scapa Flow would not merely focus on UK trade.

            A key problem with the North Sea Basin ports is that they are already congested and naturally shallow and require constant and very expensive dredging which is considered environmentally damaging. In this sense it is better to use seaports close to the ocean which have natural water depth; the natural water depth of Scapa Flow is about 25m, whilst at Felixstowe it is only about 4m, and with an artificial channel dredged to 14.5m, and ‘berth pockets’ dredged to 16m so that a laden ship does not hit the bottom. This is all very expensive to create AND maintain. There are dredger ships permanently at Felixtowe because the dredge requirement is continuous and this has a high cost which is passed on to the ships and hence the cargo, and the consumer, us. London Gateway has similar issues.

            The strategy to develop Scapa Flow was actively discouraged by UK civil servants who wanted only to develop major UK container ports in the south of England. The planned site in Scapa Flow was instead given away by Scottish Ministers to the Pelamis’ ill fated wave energy research project; the latter went bust after costing the taxpayer some £50m. This was despite investors and operators actively planning to start the container terminal.

            The reason I know most of this is because I managed EU funded projects to secure investors in the Scapa Flow container port project, also on behalf of the harbour authority and HIE. My PhD is in global strategic management in container shipping and I previously worked in the sector operating intra-Europe feeder ships and in deep sea liner agency.

            There is more here on how a Scottish ports policy and a couple of strategic national port projects would help Scotland’s competitiveness and economic growth: http://reidfoundation.org/2016/01/sort-out-our-ports/

          • Iain Stewart

            Alf Baird, your fascinating notes on the strategic potential of Scapa Flow are the most interesting thing I’ve seen on this blog for weeks. Thank you.

          • Alf Baird

            Iain Stewart

            Thanks for that. I published a number of research papers on the Scapa Flow project including this one: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/223712607_Optimising_the_Container_Transhipment_Hub_Location_in_Northern_Europe

            In the geopolitical sense a container transhipment hub allows the host nation to participate in international trade in ways it would not otherwise be able to, and serves to enhance its global competitiveness. Such a port is not even that expensive given that much of the investment especially in superstructures (cranes, systems etc) would be made by the private operator/concessionaire who would take a long term lease out on the facility.

        • Matthew Y

          Most container ships arrive in Rotterdam, Antwerp or Hamburg. Containers destined for Scotland are transhipped to smaller vessels and arrive at the container terminal in Grangemouth. So there is a logistics route already in place, just a case of upping the vessel frequency.

          • Jeff

            There’s a perfect site for a large port to be built at Cockenzie now that the power station is gone. It has a rail connection too so freight and even passenger facilities could be made. It’s also miles nearer to Rotterdam/Zeebrugge than Grangemouth/Rosyth/Leith.

          • Alf Baird

            Jeff, I’ve done research projects on Cockenzie port feasibility a number of times. It is an ideal site and offers potential for a truly trimodal port – access by road, rail and inland navigation (e.g. container barges to Grangemouth and Methil). A key aspect is proximity to open sea, and ease of access for larger ferries and cruise ships. This site also avoids entrance locks and has plenty back up land for storage, already ‘bunded’ (ex coal yard). East Lothian Council have (eventually!) done a study which confirms the site can be developed as a modern seaport for intra-Europe trade and passengers, much as I told them several years ago. However there is no national ports plan or strategy in place to help develop the port, despite such a plan having been prepared a couple of years ago by myself and Roy Pedersen (ex HIE) for the SNP Westminster Group. Thus far they have done nothing with it and ScotGov civil servants probably had a hand in that. ScotGov appear to prefer to leave the Forth and Clyde (and hence Scottish trade) in the hands of offshore private equity groups who own and REGULATE the ports and firths. As my Reid Foundation paper above notes, this is not a sensible approach for any nation dependent on trade and hence on seaports. We need to be proactive, but the current approach is inertia.

    • fonso

      Spain could veto Scotland joining the EU and in all probability would. How Edinburgh would circumvent that is a taboo question.

      • Republicofscotland

        Fonso.

        That old chestnut has been wheeled out and disproved on several occasions, I rather think Spain has an eye Gibraltar first and foremost now that the UK is out of the EU.

      • craig Post author

        Tired unionist meme that Spain has repeatedly denied. EU would be very keen to get Scotland back in and get one up over Johnson and his Brexiteers. Even of what you say were true, would be no bar to Scotland joining customs union/EEA/EFTA which economically would be just as good.

          • nevermind

            thanks for the link RoS. The issue of buttons not working can be rectified by asking all who vote for you to leave a txt,/email to Craig saying that they have just voted for you.
            I suspect that they will try every foul trick they can use, because they run the voting platform.
            But if people make their vote for you public, then it is virtually impossible to cheat.

        • laguerre

          “EU would be very keen to get Scotland back in and get one up over Johnson and his Brexiteers.”

          It’s a bit more specific and complicated, in my view, though I’m sure you were just speaking off-hand. The EU will not do anything until Scotland is actually independent, and no longer dependent on rUK. They will not support an independence movement, as they have to retain a relationship with the UK, and, yes, the problem of Spain.

          At that point, once Scotland independent, if an application for membership of the EU is made, you will find France championing a rapid entry, and leading on the issue. In front of the various Balkan countries applying. Of course at the base, it’s the Auld Alliance. I don’t know that I’ve heard specific statements in that sense – they wouldn’t want to say it outright, but that’s the tendency.

          I’ve had quite a bit to do with the Affaires Etrangères, though not on that question, and I have a rough idea of the way they think.

          To say the obvious, if France supports admission, will the others resist?

          • jake

            The EU are reluctant to be drawn on the matter while the UK is a member state.
            Come the end of December that’ll change.

          • laguerre

            jake

            EU policy wont change, because UK has finally left. Once Scotland is independent; there is a deal to be made, but they will not support a movement towards independence.

      • Jeff

        More Britnat pish; “Blah, blah, blah, Spain, veto, blah blah”.
        Spain have officially confirmed they have no intention of vetoing Scottish membership.

    • BLMac

      That’s the beauty of being independent. We can decide that for ourselves, not have the decision imposed by our hostile neighbour.

      As for all trade going through the UK, do you really think we will sit on our bums and let that continue?

  • Republicofscotland

    Yes we need to be ready for when Sturgeon resigns, taking Murrell with her, and hopefully the clique as well.

  • Kempe

    I thought Neil Mackay had resigned from AUOB following some disagreement with other organisers. Has he been let back into the fold?

  • mark golding

    Interesting letter to PM Johnson from a former ‘No’ voter, Mr McDowall, who now regrets that decision. McDowall uses powerful language where he highlights English colonial supremacy to describe the disgusting way bull(y)ington mentality and what he defines as a ‘crack-pipe dream of narcissistic imperialism’ to render the poor, poorer and leave a third of our bairns in a dreadful state of poverty,i.e. hardship and starvation.

    https://auob.org/articles/open-letter-to-boris-johnson-by-former-no-voter-lj-mcdowall

    I spotlight this letter to reveal I believe how many brave Scots were in fact afraid to leave the union until that fear was abrogated by the continual abuse of people’s lives by this Tory government.

  • BLMac

    Does the Scottish govt not recognise the Claim of Right, ie that Scottish citizens are sovereign in themselves?

    Do they think they are our rulers, not our administration?

  • M.J.

    Suppose Keatings wins his case. So what? The Scots were asked whether they wanted independence in 2014 and the answer was ‘No’. Therefore Scotland will stay in the UK, by the democratic will of the people. 🙂

    • Penguin

      The Scots voted overwhelmingly Yes.
      500,000 fraudulent postal votes, 140,000 english holiday home owners & their families, 50,000 english students and thosands of english squaddies plus their families. They robbed us of independence last time. Next time they won’t get the chance.

      • Stevie Boy

        You’re paranoid ! It was the SNP in bed with the UK government that robbed you. The English people really don’t give a toss, one way or the other about Scottish independence, certainly not enough to affect the vote.

    • Republicofscotland

      The polls suggest otherwise, when Keating wins, and he will, in my opinion that’s why the Scottish government and the Lord Advocate were intent on blocking Mr Keating’s action, it will blow Sturgeon’s bollock out of the water that we need to wait for Johnson’s consent on a S30 order.

      Is not Johnson, nor the people that’ stopping Scotland from becoming independent, no its Sturgeon/Murrell and their clique that’s denying Scots independence.

      We need Sturgeon to resign, and the more pressure applied to her from all quarters on the illegal actions she took on the fit up of Salmond, must surely hasten her exit out the door of Bute House.

  • Father O'Blivion

    Alister Jack says there won’t be a second Indy Ref for FORTY YEARS, “‘caus I says so”. Survation poll puts the Tories in third place for the Regional lists at 17%. Greens at a respectable 10% (ahead of the LibDems at 7%) which suggests folk are coming to grips with tactical voting.
    Holyrood 2021 could result in a chamber with a two thirds Indy majority. This is important as that kind of graphic carried across foreign news platforms will sway international recognition of independence.

    • nevermind

      2/3rds majority does not discount one from Machiavellian aboritions in Westmonster. Best is to start with outing and getting rid of the integrity Initiative spooks.

  • N_

    The “movement” consists of a corrupt and ruthless political party in which the leading figures pocket millions from state contracts, plus the party’s hangers-on, or “fellow travellers” as they might be called. (As in, “get a darkie up there in front when we have our photo taken.”) It’s about as “disparate” as the Countryside Alliance was. But who do the YeSNP’s thieving leaders have more contempt for? Is it 1) the uneducated thickos who sign up because they want sunshine and “freedom” and because “everyone else is independent”? Or is it 2) the “educated” morons who kid themselves into believing whatever specious “arguments” they can come up with to hide the fact that they’re basically a right-side-of-the-tracks “intellectual” version of the drunken cretinous xenophobic bigots from the football terraces? The scary thing is that Calvinist-backgrounded Donald Trump won in the US in 2016, so…

    • Jeff

      Wow. Another racist BritNat speaks! Who knew?

      Yer last colony is about to exit, stage left, and you can’t stand it eh boy? GIRFUY!

    • Greg Park

      Nobody’s career is hampered by helping persecute truth tellers. ( Look how high Sir Keir has soared.)

  • N_

    When SNP types meet a person who is opposed to independence, they tend to assume the person is a strong supporter of one of the Unionist political parties. Funny that. In actual fact, many who voted for the Union aren’t. The SNP types just can’t get their fascist heads around the idea that some people are concerned about things like health (“Will my family and I still be able to be treated under the NHS?”), work, travel (“How will the position be different when I spend time in England or if my family who are living in England come to visit me?”, and “What will my children’s citizenship position be?”), or the economy (“What happens if the international money markets scorn the poond?” and “Are you sure that ‘Scots are great’ is the right answer to the credit ratings agencies’ statements that they’d give an independent Scotland a terribly poor credit rating?”)

    Last time there was no answer to the question “What currency would an independent Scotland have?”, other than the bleat “You’re just doing a Project Fear”. That response is hardly convincing to anyone who hasn’t got sh*t for brains. However, it does illustrate the approach. Practically all elections are about time for a change versus better the devil you know. So no, it’s not because your opponent is an unscrupulous swine unlike your self-adoring and “born highly moral” self that they are daring to use techniques when opposing you.

    Next time, if there is a next time, how will they respond to those who point out the FACT that EU membership REQUIRES a hard border with territories which are outside the single market and customs union, such as the territory of the rUK? Are they going to shout “No it doesn’t!”, or will they plump for the “We won’t let the EU tell us what to do either!”

    Or perhaps they can end up by screaming “We don’t care about anything that happens after independence. All we want is independence! We’re as good as anyone else and always will be – in fact we’re better!”

    Their problem is that they are caught between stools:

    * Admitting who they really are – a bunch of disgusting moneygrabbing thieving racists who hate the guts of the English (the French don’t like the Germans much, but have you ever met a Frenchman who at sporting events always supports Germany’s opponents?) and who view London, Birmingham, etc., as “cesspools” that were handed over to foreign hordes by men and women bereft of racial pride who therefore didn’t relate to Egbert and Henry VIII in the same “highly educated” way that some in Scotland relate to the Treaty of Arbroath and Queen Mary (even if she was a Catholic). (It really does get that stupid.)

    * Admitting with economic “realism” that a very close and special relationship with rUK would be required, and that while one might be able to hope that both sides could be grown-up about it, nonetheless when negotiations are conducted between two sovereign countries you can’t demand that the other side gives you whatever you want just because you think you deserve it because you’re a patriot. Note that if the SNP ever were to propose a close and special relationship with rUK, the two questions that anyone sentient would ask are 1) “Well Scotland already has one of those. So what would the benefits of independence be exactly?” and 2) “What if rUK doesn’t want such a relationship? They’d be independent of Scotland, right?”

    • nevermind

      Lets hope there’s.no ‘next time’ for you, cause the necolonial so called liberal streak has come to an end and colonially minded pseudo Marxist are not getting anywhere with the foam coming from their mouth.

      You trying to take over Habby’ s vacancy, he’s been buried in sand by his beach babes singing Hava Nagila. Now you are clambering for FoI controlled Unionism. deary us.

    • Cubby

      N

      We already have a close and special relationship with rUK says N. Well it may be physically close but there is nothing special about it. Westminster has had many colonial relationships over the centuries so there is nothing special about it.

      N= Marxist naw N = colonialist.

      • N_

        Residents in colonies don’t send legislators to the mother country’s capital. Your definition of “colony” is … ?

        • N_

          Anyway whatever you or I may think, that is the kind of thing that the SNP would hear on the doorsteps if it were to pivot to selling the line that “of course post-independence we will need a close and special relationship with rUK” – if it were to recognise OPENLY that many on each side of the border have connections on the other side that they VALUE (which doesn’t make them self-haters), connections that most who aren’t first or second-generation immigrants don’t have with any other country; and that the Scottish government might have to compromise in some important areas if it wanted rUK to continue to buy the large majority of Scottish exports, which a market cannot be created for overnight elsewhere (a fact which doesn’t indicate anybody’s inferiority). There are probably at least some grown-ups in the SNP leadership who know all of this very well, and who know that if a “Yes” result is achieved then the very next day they will be calling for a special relationship with “our good friends” in England. Just that they can’t say that to the party base or the electorate. They know they are pulling a fast one. They have to say there would be no drawbacks to independence whatsoever, because they don’t want to open that can of worms. And as the reality gets more and more blacked out, the whole thing gets more rabid and more fascist.

          • Republicofscotland

            “They know they are pulling a fast one. They have to say there would be no drawbacks to independence whatsoever, because they don’t want to open that can of worms.”

            So tell me N, just what are the drawback of Scottish independence?

        • craig Post author

          Many Empires have had representatives of some colonies in their legislatures, usually the earlier ones. You really base your sweeping nonsense on remarkably little knowledge.

  • N_

    Exercising a licencing right similar to that which was held in London until 1968 by the Lord Chamberlain, US company called “Twitter” has closed the account of Stephen Bannon, the man who if I were running the SNP I would want to hire.

    The reason? Bannon called for the beheading of Anthony Fauci, the immunologist who is a leading figure in the White House Coronavirus Task Force. If you think that is just a story about one guy, consider that Roger Stone (who was convicted and then pardoned by his friend Trump) opined that if Trump lost the election he should impose martial law and order the arrest of th Clintons and Mark Zuckerberg. (Others only did their bit for Trump in a milder way by saying on the eve of the election that Joe Biden’s auntie’s uncle’s emails – did I get that right? – were the most shocking missives they’d ever heard about. Never forget.)

    If this comment is being read by any naive lefties, you may not realise just how lucky you are that Biden has won this election. The fascist repression had Trump won wouldn’t have taken the form of “Proud Boys” waving their “blue line” flags from their SUVs and resting their assault rifles on their beer guts as they ignored the hygiene implications of only taking showers once a week. Nor would it have been the “civil war” that all the “intellectuals” are talking about, men and women who may never have seen a brick thrown, let alone a shot fired, in anger. It would have been a repression imposed with the full force of the state – yes, backed by para-statist and private gangs in, but that’s practically one of the defining characteristics of fascism. Trump would have been mostly a figurehead, in the mould of say Hastings Banda in Malawi, and with much less mental power than say Idi Amin in Uganda, let alone Benito Mussolini or Francisco Franco. You have many past examples to choose from if you want to know what a fascist repression looks like. Events in May 1968 in France came THAT CLOSE to such a turn.

    As things stand, I give it about six months now, to be carried out under a person who isn’t Trump, and imposed ostensibly for “public safety” and “health” reasons rather than for “Hell if those paedophile pizza-eaters are going to remove our Confederate flags” reasons.

    • N_

      https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/nov/06/steve-bannon-banned-by-twitter-for-calling-for-fauci-beheading. As a right-wing Evola fan, Bannon loves mediaeval-style brutality.

      Bannon wrote:

      Second term kicks off with firing Wray, firing Fauci … no I actually want to go a step farther but the president is a kind-hearted man and a good man. (…) I’d actually like to go back to the old times of Tudor England. I’d put their heads on pikes, right, I’d put them at the two corners of the White House as a warning to federal bureaucrats, you either get with the programme or you’re gone.

      My money was always on the Jesuits to outclass Opus Dei at some point, to leave them standing…like Opus didn’t know what had hit them. If your training system requires mastering the arguments and techniques of the opponent better than the opponent has mastered them himself, there is no doubt about it – you get damned good.

    • Pigeon English

      As naive lefties are we supposed to be overwhelmed by Biden. In few days,International will be playing
      and American fascism is finally defeated. Biden will drain the swamp. Has some one hacked your account?

  • Ingwe

    So Alistair Jack (Scottish Secretary in Tory government) has said it’s likely that it will be at least 40 years before another Scottish referendum.
    Nicola is apparently outraged and probably believes she’ll still be in office then. Not sure which of the two believe themselves more.

    • laguerre

      It should be obvious that the Tory regime will never ever agree to another referendum. Jack was just putting a figure of 40 years, to discourage moderate nationalists from acting. The only way forward is to presume that Westminster will never agree, and to draw the relevant conclusions.

  • A Bruce

    Hi Craig, after reading your article I reluctantly rejoined the SNP just to be able to nominate you. I wish you good luck and think it is an excellent idea.

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