The SNP Owes Scotland an Apology

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The SNP hate all nationalisms but their own putrid nationalism. They despise American nationalism; the American working class voter is a loathsome degenerate, a slave of Trump and Christian dogma; they hate French nationalism, a relic of old Europe with a direct link with Islamophobia; Theresa May; oh by Jove! That high priestess of hate, dragging Scotland out of Europe against its will – she is a moral criminal; the worst kind of nationalist – a British nationalist! They hate all peoples and enslaved the world, including us brave Scotch! They are the real basket of deplorables.  Standing tall on their moral soap-box  the SNP  evangilise their moral superiority to these nationalisms. And yet the SNP are growing to the idea that the world will be better with more of their nationalism.  Listen to that perfect hypocrisy.  The problem is other nationalisms, the solution is Scottish nationalism. Well, how convenient, how could I not see the light? It is not like any other nationalism has ever offered that solution, is it? This time, it’s different; it’s not like the superiority of American, French, English or any other nationalism; it’s better, more tolerant. Well isn’t that modest? Or maybe just the most chauvinistic and nationalistic thing I have ever heard and a statement that reveals the dark heart of Scottish nationalism, its inherent racism.

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Hugh MacDiarmid: The Cultural Symbol for National Renewal was a Fascist

This tolerant nationalism has destroyed two countries – Scotland and the UK – and we should demand an apology for the great disruption and harm this nationalist dogma has caused to Scotland and Great Britain. Scottish nationalism presents itself as civic, accepting of all identities; Syrian refugees are welcome; Eritrean migrants can call Scotland home. Yet, should you be a Scot who identifies with Britain, and wish to maintain our Union, you are not welcome, you are a traitor. There is the plain farce of Scottish nationalism: it welcomes an Iraqi from 4000 miles away but excludes your neighbour; it reaches out to the EU and Brussels but alienates, estranges, and ostracises 55% of the people who live in Scotland. This is not progress but the destruction of not one country, the UK, but two – the UK & Scotland. For this continued act of destruction, under the sword of nationalism, we demand an apology.

The responsibility that comes with civic power is crucial; the nationalists have abused that power. The SNP have ascended to a cosmic political height; their recent achievements are unsurpassed in electoral history. But let’s be clear, the SNP have demonstrated irresponsibility with power akin to a wayward teenager; their decision making a vertiginous shit stained mess, and as a consequence Scotland’s saviours have turned Scotland’s public services,  once recognised for their excellence across the globe,   into an international joke. The Holyrood committees, whose primary purpose is to hold the Scottish Government to account, are crammed with a shocking cabal of pliable misfits, a mirage of MSPs, a vast array of plastic politicians, wretched runners for a wretched cause, that neglect their civic responsibility to scrutinize the government, and nod along with their masters with all the determined fury of a Motorhead fan listening to Ace of Spades.

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Yousaf: Oversaw the Slow Collapse of the Transport Network

Free of oversight, the Scottish Government exacts its agenda with dire consequences for the ordinary individual. The economy has shrunk, education standards have taken a permanent lousy turn; the NHS is ailing, and the transport network is creaking. All power is subsumed into that ideological skank and intellectual whore, separation.  Power is a grim idol that the world adores, said William Hazlitt and so it has come to pass.  So caught in the warm embrace of nationalism, and the warm glow of power that the SNP exert, these so called critics of parliament have become, caught in the tide of hysteria, obstinate adherents to the SNP, have become a society of the divine right; traitors to civic responsibility. This complacency is borne out in the behaviour of MP’s.  Two MP’s –  Natalie McGarry and Michelle Thompson – are under police investigation;  while Angus MacNeil uses tax payer money to pay for hotel rooms for his lewd infidelity. We demand an apology for this abuse of power.

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Both MP’s are Despicable Opportunists

An apology for the political sham that was the 2014 separation referendum should always be offered. Sturgeon has shown a sectarian contempt for the majority of Scots that voted for the Union, and infected the body politic with a nationalistic poison leading to political dysfunction. Good governments govern for all, but she willfully ignores the better half of Scotland, the reasoned and thoughtful half. In my opinion, the SNP and those voters who voted for separation in 2014, should be thanking us for being possessed with the sense to reject their vote for separation. The separatists based the entire future of our country on fictional oil figures. The beloved beacon of social democracy, Norway, does not behave with such wanton recklessness; you know why? Because the price of commodities are unstable and prone to catastrophic collapse. Where would Scotland be now? Free?!?! No! We would be enthralled to the IMF and like Ireland post 2008, economists would be running our public finances; like Latvia, our NHS slashed and privatised; like Greece, our pensions liquidated, and like Europe eternally tethered to a poisonous currency and an austerity super state. Should these voters value freedom they should be down on their knees begging us for forgiveness. You almost destroyed the country. Today, nationalists, call that near act of suicide, failure. And you want another vote!?!?!  Are you mad??  Well we should be! Should anyone ever question your patriotism tell them this sweet fact: our vote for the union saved us from turning Scotland into Greece, pimped out by the IMF to the highest bidder.

The Scottish National Party 2017 Spring Conference Day Two

The Age of the Messianic Politics: Followers are Beguiled by Power

Is there any humility for 2014? Any recognition of the momentous blunder? No. In fact, Sturgeon has doubled down on her utopian vision and upped her hatred of the UK, undermining the UK by going to the EU to seek allies in her Godly crusade, what an emphatically profane act of arrogance. Horrified by the brass neck of such actions, the EU paid for her ticket home.  In a move replicating Irish nationalism, Sturgeon went to America to seek sympathisers to her cause. What exactly is the First Minister thinking? Her senses fully detached of reason, she feels it acceptable to stir sentiment for the destruction of the British state in America while still demanding equality in the British parliament? Is this some C.S. Lewis fantasy where the laws of the nature do not apply? We demand an apology for this lack of humility and continued insult to the Scottish people

When Alice chased the rabbit down the Rabbit hole she found the mad hatter. When Sturgeon chased the nationalist dream down the rabbit hole she did so, hand-in hand and headlong, already with accompanied by a prattling idiot, Alex Salmond. In this universe treating people with perfect disrespect and expecting parity in return is believable, but oor tartan Alice is in for a rude awakening. Hubris is swiftly accompanied by nemesis, and Sturgeon, with her arrogance and lack of humility, is setting herself up to be the another example of that great political mythology, nemesis.  That may very well come in the form of a Conservative resurgence in June.

The Problem with Brexit and Scottish Independence

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The Scottish nationalist’s grievance arsenal is being loaded with a new theme should Brexit materialise.  In their minds, a Brexit would be the silver bullet that demonstrated the unbridgeable chasm between Britain and Scotland, triggering a new referendum, and a replay of the 2014 Referendum. But a Leave vote is potentially loaded with dangerous ultimatums for the SNP. The British people would have decided to create their own unique economic system that works in their best interests, an incredible political action that would raise the economic stakes and may leave Scotland with two blunt choices: the Union or the EU.

Post-Brexit the currency union becomes a critical debating point. During the Scottish Referendum, this was an emotive topic, as was membership of the EU; Salmond never convinced on both. Should a Brexit materialise these will become key talking points. In 2014, Salmond’s currency union was predicated on both Scotland and England being in the EU, a shared currency linked Scotland’s powerful financial sector to the City of London, ensuring co-operation, and safe-guarding the important financial hubs of Edinburgh and Glasgow. Post-Brexit a currency union becomes impossible as Scotland and England will be operating in two completely separate markets. In these circumstances, Salmond’s currency vision vanishes; you cannot have an EU member state with the same currency as a non-EU member state.  A Brexit kills Salmond’s position on currency and raised deep questions about what separate Scotland’s currency would adopt; Scotland would be forced towards the Euro.

Trade becomes a Gideon Knot, an intractable economic problem that works against Scottish separation. The UK and America are by some distance Scotland‘s most valuable trading partners; they out-strip the EU and provide the vast majority of our exports. According to the Scottish Government, Britain comprises of £48.5 billion (64%) of our total exports; the rest of the world accounts for £15.2 billion; and the EU, £11.6 billion. Our prosperity is more dependent on Britain than the EU by a considerable distance. This raises profound questions for the SNP. Should this be 2014 and Scotland voted to Leave, the EU would have secured trade between Scotland and Britain. A Brexit would irrevocably alter this reasoning; the island of Great Britain would be comprised of two completely separate markets. Our biggest trading partner would be alien.
This raises important questions and brings forth the striking hypocrisy of the second referendum proposal. A UK referendum is bringing us out the EU, one of our key markets (15%  of trade). This has a major effect on our material circumstances. Therefore we must have a referendum to come out of our largest market, the UK (70% of trade) an act that would be severely detrimental to our material circumstances. An incredible proposition, really. Do we opt out of Britain, our most valuable market, diminishing our relationship with our largest trader to integrate with the EU? Do we create an island comprised of separate markets? Do we hanker so hungrily for the EU? Brexit is a perfect fiasco that alters the calculus of the constitutional question profoundly.

With Britain deciding to go it alone to create its own economic model, Scotland would have to decide between Europe and the Euro or Britain and Sterling. This is nowhere near as smooth as what was proposed in 2014; Brexit would result in greater risk and higher stakes. This time you are not leaving your biggest trading partner – Britain – and then working with them in the same market, the EU. But you would be abandoning your biggest trading partner for another trading partner, the EU. In this scenario, a second independence referendum would be based on two choices: do you want the European Union or do you want the British Union; the Euro or the Pound; Westminster or Brussels. Should Scotland be independent and join the EU there will be no currency union and no free trade with Brexit Britain.
In this case “Project Fear” may become a reality. Scots will squirm at the prospect of Euros being deposited into their bank accounts instead of  Sterling. According to polls, the Union will survive a Brexit, there is no hunger for independence. Paint this picture – the Euro or Sterling – and independence becomes more difficult. Scotland loves Britain, but does it love Europe more? In the last election Scots voted Tory to bolster the strength of the Union. This time the SNP will not have the fantasy oil figures to rely on. Serious questions will also be asked about the public purse. Not mention that entry into the EU demands that you balance your budget, neoliberal talk for austerity. This is a potentially toxic cocktail.
Politics is the art of controlling your environment; for the SNP a Brexit flares up too many unknowns. Ideally they want Remain to win; the implications would be more favourable. Britain may have a rejuvenated UKIP, the positions of Cameron and Osbourne will be insecure, with the possibility of a right-wing coup in the Conservative Party. This is familiar terrain, the nationalist movement is defined against the Tories, these factors you can control and exploit; it’s a chaotic right-wing government run by a platoon of usurping bandits, running head-long to oblivion. Critically, however, Scotland would still be able to trade with its biggest trading partner, the UK, under the EU umbrella. That’s the SNP’s best option, and probably the likely outcome. However, should a Brexit materialise, the UK would have emphatically rejected the EU model. Current polls suggest Scotland will vote Remain. Sturgeon will rightfully make hay out of this outcome and raise the possibility of a second referendum. But with that comes a host of potential, unprecedented problems.  The labyrinthine constitutional question would take another unexpected turn.

 

SNP Hypocrisy: Top Three Brexit Contradictions

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1 – Austerity

The SNP’s followers vaunt their glorious queen, Frau Sturgeon, as a Joan of Arc moral crusader fighting against the offensive iniquity of austerity. She fights for the little guy, for the people, for you and me comrade! In the Great Leap forward – the 2015 General Election – our Stalinista said admirable words on the topic, rooted in principle and ethical conviction ‘I will not do any deals with parties of austerity.’ Words for the ages, yes?! No! In Olympic speed she has reversed this stance in a move that would give the most cynical commentators political whiplash

For those in doubt let me explain – the EU has enacted the most toxic austerity program in European history, administered fatal doses of austerity directly into the body of nations across the continent. Brussels performs an economic blood-letting intended to make the economically sick better but only serves to put nations on life-support.  We all know the stories. The EU inserted Troika officials into the Irish Government, abolished the Irish National Minimum Wage and massacred social services. In Greece, austerity measures were pushed through against the Greek peoples’ will and the IMF sold the state assets. In Latvia the health service has been cut by 36%. The country still lags behind its 2008 living standards. Since 2008 austerity is now enshrined in law and the EU constitution. The EU is the Kingdom of Austerity.

Morals only extend to the Cliffs of Dover, apparently. The very saviours of Scotland, the SNP, and their phalanx of the intellectually inert, are now willing to get in bed with this unholy corporate alliance. The SNP have such unyielding love for neoliberal austerity that it will trigger another referendum, should their membership be withdrawn. Let me see here, the SNP wanted independence because neoliberal austerity, but now want to join an international austerity union that will have austerity written in our constitution, forcing all new members to implement austerity. Wow! How the Frau in fuchsia manages to get out of her bed in the morning without a spine is a miracle worthy of Vatican investigation.

2 – Self-Determination and Independence

We know the SNP narrative. Scotland should be Independent – Hurrah! The people of Scotland should make their own laws – Damn right!! After all we are an ancient and proud people, if somewhat liberal about wounding our fellow countrymen with kitchenware. Err, quite right,sir! To be ruled by a foreign power is foregoing our birth right as Scotsmen. Bravo! We will certainly not tolerate wretched Tories making our laws, who, by the day, have the coherence of a Gilbert and Sullivan play performed by Tourrete’s sufferers. This is just the jab of nationalistic adrenaline that exercised the nation during that circus of political depravity, the Scottish Referendum. A mendacious ideological mantra as familiar to the SNP as vomit and abject despondency is to your regular Glasgow First Bus journey. This is the oxygen of the SNP; their very existence depends on this grievance. Surely they would support self determination and independence for others? Wrong.

The SNP are horrified when other politicians employ this nationalistic charade for national independence. When Boris Johnson said on the most recent debate that the people of Britain are the best people to handle their affairs it was considered a momentary bout of mania. Sturgeon rubbished the idea of British self-determination. The people? Running their own affairs? Impossible. An idea entirely antithetical to imperatives of globalisation; sovereignty is shared and must be sacrificed to the EU. What she conveniently labelled ‘interdependence.’ She even had the temerity to call other EU countries independent. In 2015, a referendum was held in Greece where 61% voters rejected austerity. The EU rejected the result. In 2008, the Irish people returned a no vote to the implementation if the Lisbon Treaty. The EU rejected this mandate. In 1992, Denmark refused to terms of the Maastricht Treaty twice at the ballot box. The EU rejected the outcome. Now the SNP is promoting this organisation; the same SNP who vaunted democratic ideals so powerfully during the Scottish Referendum. Self-determination is definitely a marriage of convenience, a means to an end, the clarion call for free Caledonia, but not for anyone else

Here is the SNP’s hypocritical logic laid bare. The SNP believe in self-determination and independence from the Union; the English people and the Leave campaign are wrong to pursue self-determination and independence from a Union; Scottish self-determination and independence should be sacrificed for another Union. The level of surrealism and confusion makes one think they are trapped in a John Malkovic movie, or part of some horrific political opera where the characters traverse a series of deep identity crises. But maybe there a more obvious explanation. Maybe the SNP are a capricious rabble with political expediency as their true guiding principle with no honest conviction to the principles of self-determination. Yeah, that is it. That is politics. The SNP are a con, rogue traders; Sturgeon and Salmond, the Sultans of Sham.

3 – The Democratic Deficit

The SNP political buzz-word, Salmond has uttered this noxious phrase with such regularity he is beginning to sound like a political robot with Aspergers. The inscrutable lump and impressive manufacturer of useless twaddle said recently ‘The best way to correct the democratic deficit across the UK is to breakup the UK.’ Well on that logic, we must break the EU because the democratic deficit is a galactic gulf. Laurie Penny put it best in the New Statesmen, the EU has been damaged ‘by decades of neoliberal gerrymandering, of power being shunted towards an unaccountable centre – these injuries are profound and systemic.’ This is not a deficit but a democratic black-hole, matched only in size and incomprehension by Salmond’s all consuming face-hole.

As ever, his Robin to his Batman – wait, perhaps I am being too kind – his Linda to his Neil Hamilton; his Mary to his Fred West; the First Minister of Falsehoods, Wee Nicola, matched his hypocrisy. On the most recent EU debate she said that England had no place querying the EU’s shadowy unelected council because Britain has the House of Lords. Here! Here! I hear you say, a fairly clear, straight forward and inoffensive position, guided by solid democratic principles. The people and only the people should have the power to make laws. Indeed, the Irritant of Irvine has repeatedly offended our lugs with calls for the ‘relic’ Lower Chamber to ‘be dismantled.’

The only thing that was dissolved was Sturgeon’s principles, however. Like re-united twins separated at birth, she now wishes to embrace an unelected chamber with open-arms. It’s the kind of spectacular betrayal of loyalties, and rekindling of a vested love interests, that puts one in mind of the Blair-Gaddafi bromance in the Libyan Desert. Unelected foreign officials who make our laws are actually our bag, baby! The SNP not only want to be part of this clique but they are willing to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with Tories to defend it. What foul hypocrisy. This can only be imagined as some form of political swinging, where instead of car keys you place your party membership card in the bowl, and, hey presto! You pull supporter of despotic official instead of Social Democrat. With these contortions Sturgeon and Salmond are a sure thing for World Twister Champion 2016.

Austerity and the SNP

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Anti-austerity is key to Scottish nationalism; it was the moral force behind separatism and continues to shape Scottish political language. Scotland is a conservative nation and never embraced economic reform willingly. In the 1980’s people were reluctant to embrace industrial modernisation, the battle they fought was bitter and lionised in Glaswegian culture; the Shipyards sit-ins were a national event broadcast on the BBC, a bold Socialist action that demonstrated solidarity with workers across the UK. Workers took ownership of their trades, fought for their communities and lively-hoods, refused to be rats in rat-race and declared a better future for the working man. Trade Unions had always been antagonistic to management and entrenched firmly on class lines, Thatcherism was different, social classes in mortal combat for the soul the nation. With the passage of time this feeling is undiminished; in retrospect the scale of the “loss” seems huge given the march of Neoliberalism into every corner of the globe. The narrative is much mythologized and passed down to generations, a tragic Thermopolyean class war. Another ‘nearly story’ before Glasgow’s Socialist ambitions dissolved in the tempest of Globalisation

In many ways that legacy still defines Scottish politics; the left envisage Cameron and austerity as Thatcher 2.0. Tory policies were against Scotland’s democratic will, opposing them became a centre-fugal force in the independence debate; anti-austerity was the key-plank in the intellectual argument for independence. This created significant fallout; it opened the old Thatcherite wound, elevated anti-Tory rhetoric to new heights and resurrected old socialist shibboleths. In short, Scotland imagined Westminster as a tool of corporate international neoliberalism and defined itself against this imagined enemy. Relying mainly on imagined oil revenues, Scotland would oppose the austerity imposition, scrap Trident, lower food bank usage, fight the Establishment and usher in what independentscotland.org modestly called ‘a new age of Enlightenment’. Scotland would be a New Jerusalem.

Westminster on the other hand was the seat of crony capitalism and Cameron its high priest, a wretched runner of a wretched cause, a cloven footed neo-liberal ghoul feeding off avarice and greed who enriched his friends at the expense of the poor. In the eyes of the separatist, the fight was conceived in these hissing Manichean terms, capitalism and globalisation are the problems and the imagined panacea is socialism and the welfare state. Consequently, in the heat of the Referendum, a new Scottish nationalism was forged; a left-wing political anti-austerity position. Spotting this new nationalism, the SNP ran their 2015 election on an anti-austerity platform, in full knowledge that they would never be in a seat of power to implement their policies UK wide. An important implication arises from this campaign; from the voters’ perspective the SNP is the anti-austerity party.With Holyrood’s greater financial autonomy, harsh austerity is no longer predestined. Edinburgh has the power to prevent cuts to local councils; it can increase spending on Police Scotland, education, disability benefits, including the Bedroom Tax, and top up Universal Credit, but there is no indication that the SNP will raise taxes to improve benefits or services, or reverse any Tory cuts.

You do not have to look far for an explanation; the SNP are fully behind the neoliberal agenda. As Alec Salmond stated, he wanted to integrate Scotland into the international financial market, policies such as the reduction in corporation tax would stimulate inward investment from corporations, hardly progressive. He also wanted to maintain a currency union post-separation; conceived for the sole purpose of keeping Edinburgh’s lucrative financial sector integrated with the City of London. Equally tax averse is Scotland’s Financial Secretary, John Swinney; he said ‘I don’t envisage ¬increases in personal taxation in an independent Scotland’. In his most recent budget, he refused to use his newly devolved powers granted by the Calman Commission to increase tax. Nicola Sturgeon is of similar neoliberal stripes, she has shunned the opportunity to reverse the Tory tax give-away, the increase in the personal allowance. She attacked the Labour leader Kezia Dugdale because she planned to overturn this Tory policy. The SNP are not a tax raising party, they are die-in-the-wool neoliberals. Unsurprisingly Andrew Rawnsley commented that the SNP party conference reminded him of Thatcher’s Conservative party conferences in the 1980’s; neoliberalism as a tool of national rejuvenation.
Adding to this is Scotland’s financial black hole. Scotland has a budget deficit of £15 billion, 10% of GDP. To put that into perspective, the Greece deficit is 7.2% GDP. If we were to compare Scotland to a country of similar size, say Salmond’s vaunted neoliberal ‘Celtic Tiger’ Ireland, it would have to severely slash social services. Ireland’s austerity program is an undemocratic nightmare. All of Ireland’s budget decisions must first be cleared with the Troika. In fact, international financial agencies go a long way to making decisions; Troika officials and economist are fully embedded in the Irish government. Under the Troika’s direction,  Ireland abolished the national minimum wage, reduced the welfare state with significant cuts in payment of child benefit, career’s allowance, and implemented an increasingly stringent form of means testing for benefit claimants. Rounded up the Troika forced Ireland to make cuts of £30 billion. According to Oxfam the financial squeeze resulted in increased rates of suicide and alcoholism in the under 25’s. More than likely a separated Scotland would have been in a similar position; the IMF or Bank of England would have provided Scotland financial bail-outs. Enthralled to the Troika or the BOE Scotland would be compelled to cut its cloth.As it stands however, Scotland still has to find a balanced budget. In the interests of market stability and looking credible to outside investors, one of the imperatives of the Smith Commission is Holyrood’s fiscal responsibility. Edinburgh must balance its budget. Given such an enormous deficit crisis Scotland needs to cut social services, raise taxes, or a mixture of both – a measure Jeffrey Howe implemented in the 80’s to good effect. As discussed, raising taxes is not the domain of the SNP, and they have been more than happy to cut services recently. The SNP are neoliberals and the hammer will fall on services.

A conundrum arises from this vicissitude: how can the SNP’s neoliberal vision be reconciled with the fervent nationalism the Referendum created and defines Scottish politics? The point of realization between what the SNP are as a political party and what the people believe they are is coming. In the last month, the SNP’s rating in the second ballot for the upcoming Scottish Elections has fallen almost 10%. As the SNP’s anti-austerity credentials diminish, voters are shifting to radical anti-austerity parties. One of the more peculiar manifestations of this culture is the crypto commie, hippie chain- gang, RISE. Disillusioned with the SNP, these anti-capitalists, eco-socialist, anti-globalisation and anti-austerity Poundshop Corbynistas are united against the tyranny of Westminster. Factionalism will continue should the likely scenario prevail at the elections and the SNP gain another majority; they will lose the moral force of their independence narrative. Should they demur from raising taxes and keep the path of austerity the shine comes off the SNP. As the SNP fully comprehend, for Scotland to be successful it needs to embrace economic change, move away from its tax and spend economy to a low tax high wage economy that benefits society. Currently, with more state influence and ownership in the economy, Scotland is more Socialist than Norway. Scotland needs greater entrepreneurs, a highly skilled work-force, better education, a digital revolution and an increase in specialised roles in the service industry. We need modernisation. To a regular Glaswegian and separatist, however, this stinks of high Toryism. The echo of Thatcher and Cameron. For the SNP to succeed economically it must adopt some Tory policies, an eventuality that has profound consequences. If anti-austerity was the basis of the SNP’s popularity, and the moral force that almost tore the Union asunder, it will be the rock on which the SNP finally crashes.