The end game

The “Great Tory Power Grab” has been coming for some time. From a British establishment perspective, devolution has gone terribly wrong. It was never the intention that Scotland should have a real parliament. It was never envisaged that we would have a real government and real political leaders treading the world stage alongside UK leaders rather than walking a respectful distance behind.

It was never part of the plan that Holyrood should become the primary locus of Scottish politics. Nobody foresaw the extent to which devolution would result in Scotland developing a distinctive political culture.

The British state does not happily tolerate rivals. Challenges to the supremacy of its political elite are regarded as an affront to the natural order. The British establishment fears and hates the SNP. Democratic dissent poses no problems. The British political system has evolved to be able to easily withstand the action of popular movements. What can’t be crushed is absorbed. But a popular movement with access to effective political power is a different matter. The SNP is a threat because it provides a progressive independence movement which would otherwise be ineffectual with an agency able to challenge the British political system from within.

The combination of the Yes movement, the Scottish Parliament and the SNP represents a very real threat to the structures of power, privilege and patronage which define the British state.

It wasn’t supposed to be this way. Contrary to popular belief, the electoral system for the Scottish Parliament was not designed to prevent the SNP gaining power. It didn’t have to be. It only had to be designed to prevent any single party from gaining an overall majority. This should have ensured that some combination of the three British parties would always be able to keep control. That all went wrong in 2007. Ever since then, the British establishment has been desperately seeking a way to retrieve the situation. The SNP is the lever. The Scottish Parliament is the fulcrum. The Yes movement is the force. Removing any one of these from the equation will end the threat.

The full might of the British state’s formidable machinery has been brought to bear on the Yes movement and the SNP. Both have been targeted by a massive and totally unprincipled propaganda campaign such as is seldom seen in peacetime. The SNP has been the main target, because it’s easier to attack a party than a principle. But this onslaught has not been effective. That troublesome trio of components remains intact. Despite the best efforts of an almost universally hostile media and a devolution process which has been transformed into a weapon against the SNP administration, the threat to the British state persists.

Brexit offers an opportunity to take out one of those vital elements – the Scottish Parliament. The nature of the devolution settlement is such as to make Holyrood vulnerable to the actions of a UK Government desperate, stupid and unscrupulous enough to use its powers to effectively cripple Scotland’s democratically elected parliament. What we see in the European Union (Withdrawal) Bill is the playing out of a process which many have anticipated ever since it became evident that the No vote in 2014 had not been the death blow to both the SNP and the independence movement that the British establishment had hoped for.

Surely nobody now can be in any doubt about the malign intent of the UK Government. A government that has been repeatedly and emphatically rejected by the people of Scotland is now set upon ripping the heart out of the Parliament that is elected by the people of Scotland. Every citizen of Scotland, regardless of their views on the constitutional issue, must now ask themselves whether they are prepared to tolerate this. And those who continue to insist on preserving the union even at the cost of our Parliament and our democracy must face some hard questioning.

Picture from The National

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29 thoughts on “The end game

  1. Proud Cybernat

    Spot on, Mr Bell.

    Mayhem signaled this intent at her party’s conference last year. However, if they think a majority of Scots will remotely tolerate their anti-Scotland, anti-democratic machinations then they are very sadly mistaken and in for a very rude awakening.

    Any moves by WM to stifle or otherwise undermine Scotland’s democratically elected parliament will utterly fail and will only push Scotland quicker towards the UK exit door. Guaranteed. As such, a substantial part of me hopes that they will be stupid enough to pursue this.

    Go on WM – make my day.

    1. Magnus

      For over a year now I have been kind of suggesting a Scotland style march through London to Westminster. I think that time is getting nearer.

      1. Travelady

        I agree. Before I would have been worried about getting arrested and losing my job, but now I’d be front and centre. I maybe a middle aged woman, but I cannot sit back back and watch this happen.

  2. scrandoonyeah

    I think a lot of us have known this for quite a time.

    Scotland’s very existence as a nation is under threat and it is going get very nasty over the coming months.

    But there is no doubt in my mind that self-determination is coming.

    1. Anne

      I agree… Scotland will not just lie down and take it.

      It’s become a Country again, or remain subservient to the whims of the UK Gov Resource Gobbling Machine.

      Fracking will be the least of it!

  3. bringiton

    The tactics from Westminster in Scottish elections is now to combine all three unionist parties into one.
    This is the only way they can attempt to defeat the SNP.
    The only choice now for Scottish voters is either Holyrood or Westminster,no more devolution malarkey.
    The pretence of devolution was only sustainable when the reality could be kept hidden from Scots by a compliant “executive” in Holyrood and the London press pack.
    Now that the truth has outed,Westminster realises that the game is up and it is time to crush rebellious Scots.
    The SNP will offer Scots a very different one from that being proposed by England’s Tories and it will be up to Scots to decide,despite Westminster’s determination that no choice should be on offer.
    Who needs democracy when you can have Westminster rule?

    1. Norman Howell

      Westminster Democracy policy is, Let us live ! but YOU Scotland ! must die ! to allow US to live ! C’mon folks, are you going to allow this to happen ? We need another Election

  4. Sandra eeles

    it’s a great article but we need the crap papers to print some of these to show the average person that there is true information out there. I couldn’t believe the lies coming out of one of my friends yesterday and she really believes it.

  5. Annie Purcell

    There should be no backdoor interference by anyone connected to Westminster in our voting system here in Scotland in the future including Postal votes

  6. Brian Powell

    On taking action, the SNP, the Greens and the wider Yes movement, will, but the overwhelming stupidity of the Labour Party is a weight around our ankles.
    They hope all that is needed is a Labour Government in Westminster and all will be well again for them. The voters are irrelevant except as numbers.

  7. Geacher

    A pile of pish Peter, and you know it. The SNP under Sturgeon are dead in the water….. no Hosie, no MacAskill, no Bell, no Neil, no Kerevan, no Monoghan, no Sheikh, no Robertson, no Salmond and no hope whatsover….. 21 seats and almost 480,000 votes lost….. Sheppard sitting on the naughty step…. the UK Government does not need to do anything to undermine the independence movement, Sturgeon is quite capable of doing that herself.
    The End Game indeed.
    Time to look for another job, Peter.

    1. DJI

      Where can I buy whatever it is you are taking!
      The SNP won the election by what would normally be called a landslide.
      More seats than all the other parties combined.
      From what I see and hear locally the local electorate are already regretting the election of a vacuous tory puppet who has signalled her attention to do nothing for the electorate
      Thank you for giving me my first belly laugh of the week

    2. Rodric Selbie

      Obviously you have no pride as you support a regime described as the most corrupt on the planet ruling over your Country, however, the people who have some pride have not given up the fight since the vote back in 2014. You just continue spewing out all the guff figures you want because we know how well that worked for you last time, a 22 point lead lost even with all the media backing your cause…I also wouldn’t be too confident about a NO victory next time, we know that approx 70% of pensioners voted NO and it has been worked out that around 150,000 NO voters will have made the trip to heaven by the year 2018, we lost the vote by less than 200,000, also remember many EU Nationals voted NO due to the worry of EU membership, now their worry is the other way round, not only that we now can see the lies Better Together spewed out.

      Vote NO to secure our place in Europe (LIE)
      Vote NO to save 2000 HMRC Income Tax jobs (LIE)
      Vote NO or companies like Scottish Widows will leave, now based in London (LIE)
      Vote NO to secure the building of Frigates on the Clyde, now reduced and the frigate factory shelved, (LIE)
      Vote NO to save British Steel jobs, it took the Scottish Government to save the plant (LIE)
      Vote NO or subsidies for Scotland’s renewable energy sector will stop, now stopped (LIE)
      Vote NO because only the broad shoulders of the UK could save the OIL Industry, now mass unemployment (LIE)
      Vote NO Cameron promised a 200 Billion North Sea Oil boom with investment (LIE)
      Vote NO and lose the HS2 planned for Scotland, now we are told ‘no business case’ for taking fast train service to Scotland (LIE)
      Vote NO and lose the £1 billion to develop “carbon capture and storage” technology on power stations, now cancelled (LIE)
      Vote NO Cameron said “Scotland should lead the UK not leave” on the same day as the NO vote EVEL is introduced making it impossible for a Scot to become a Prime Minister ever again… (LIE)

      We started the last time at 28% next time at the very least we start at 45%

      1. Geacher

        Rodric…where did I say that I supported the Tories? An huge error of assumption on your part. Look at your points..all you have done is take a series of grievances and morphed them into alleged broken promises. 200 HMRC jobs lost? When the SG demanded and got powers over income tax, where did you expect the inevitable job cuts would happen? Shrewsbury? How many frigates would have been built in an independent Scotland? And why do you think Scottish Widows moved? HS2 was never mentioned during the referendum and as for outlandish promises about oil, look no further than Alex Salmond’s epic work of fiction, “The White Paper On Independence.” And as for EVEL meaning it will be impossible for a Scot ever to become Prime Minister? Fiction.

    3. Robert Graham

      Back to the daily mail fool . too scared to use your real name , hiding behind yer pseudonym ? Yah coward .

    4. Peter A Bell Post author

      Just out of curiosity, what does your demented imagination tell you my job is right now. Your little ‘deposit’ above would seem to suggest you think I’m an MP or ex-MP. Which we be a new departure into inanity even for a bladder such as yourself.

  8. David MacGille-Mhuire

    “Geacher” goes on a hubristic roll as the Union implodes.

    Go for it “Geacher”. Go.

    What will you do when the sovereign Scots citizenry and their parliament democratically abrogate the Union Treaty and eject all vestigial UK colonial service gophers from our sovereign soil?

    Bags packed in anticipation even though you are welcome to stay should you do so as dissenting voices will still be warmly welcomed within the body of the democratic Kirk, as it were?

    Who do you think will have you in the vein of the tumbleweed stateless white South African parasite partitionists still wandering the globe wailing and and guirning or weeping outright and seeking an apartheid state sanctuary similar to their beloved pre-Mandela, white supremacist regime?

    Will a post-Brexit England have you, welcome you to its green and pleasant bosom, for even though you are a technical Brit – if you are that (?) – you really are not the real Anglo McCoy?

    An alien (please see the pre-Union Treaty English Alien Act re the Scots).

    Shall the DUPers rush to offer you a sinecure in their British exclave in the north of Ireland?

    Are you a forward planner with back-up plans up your sleeve perhaps involving job re-training in case even the USA and its current regime were to reject your application for a Green Card given you are, I am guessing from your discourse evidence, a British establishment type of person?

    What will you do when the former British colonies reject your work and residency visa applications?

    Try moving to Antarctica where even the penguins, I suspect, may tell you to get on your skates out of there?

    The Falkland Islands an option? Suspect, again, the Falkland Islanders would rather have an Argentinian as their next door neighbor. But go on and check out your options in this and every other respect.

    PS Thoughts about May being on the Tory naughty step, too, as she is excised from the Tory homepage in what looks like preparation for an Ides of March move against her?

    PPS Thoughts on the incoming collapse of this coup d’etatist Tory government and its ongoing concessions to the EU by the aforementioned coup d’etatist “BritGov” during these laughable negotiations? Do you still have your BoJo mojo rockin’ n rollin’ and are you prepared for the possibilities that even the guid folks of the Iberian peninsula may well tell you to take a chauvinist hike home to wherever that is?

    Where will you go? Volunteer to be seal hunting chum way up in the cauld outermost regions – geographically if not constitutionally in terms of the First Nations – of Canada?

    Quebec an option?

    Ah, but they are all, mostly, Frog Hugenot or Frog Jungle Gym Frog speakers who already have more powers than our devolved and recalled Scottish parliament and are still pondering their relationship with the rest of this country which repatriated its constitution from Westminster (the Kiwis might be able to offer you words of wisdom too. I have Maori cousins who might well assist you).

    Oh, et en passant, there’s a substantial Gaelic language and heritage population in Newfoundland, Cape Breton, and Nova Scotia who might offer you job advice, as you did to Mr Bell who is our host, as you transition on seeking anchor in this turbulent, “What’n fcuk happened (?) to my AngloJockBrit dominated world all in pink on my primary school classroom geography chart that Mrs Pendleton-MacPeem used to teach us by way of repetitive drills and punitive pop quizzes? And let’s not forget the liberal administration of the Lochgelly – when we moved up to the big school – by oor ain Domine Big Jock McThrum, former BritJock guardsman to yon German qyne, and oor joint BritNat history and BritNat geography inculcator of “eternal” AngloBritNat ‘truths'”.

    Halcyon days, eh?

    Jimminy Cricket, am havering on in response take yir keech attempt at Socratic argumentation not even able to get off the starting blocks and further soiled by your hominem snide commentary.

    May I apologize and suggest you go back to

    (a) to Socratic basics

    and

    (b) a wee pause and reflection meditation on what constitutes good manners as taught to us all by our beloved grandmothers

    Luck to you and yours either staying in a re-independent Scotland or should you seek to move on.

    I suggest you stay and help, but it is your choice, ultimately.

  9. alasdairB

    The Tory party have a long & not so illustrious history of using,screwing & discarding countries. As the Bill is drafted it’s obvious Scotland & Wales are going to get a proper Colonial ‘seeing to’ , the likes & extent of which we have not experienced in living memory.

    The proposed Bill is frankly a dog’s breakfast and must be redrafted for clarity, if nothing else. The Costitutional questions raised within the Bill will make the legal profession rich beyond their wildest dreams & will occupy the finest legal minds for many months if not years.

    One of the major selling points of Brexit by Boris Johnson was ‘repatriating our laws’ from Brussels. The Bill sets out to make makes this possible through the cut & paste of the 1000s of EU laws in force in the UK at the date of our leaving the EU. However this Boris type repatriation is not for the attention of Westminster. It’s simply a power grab on an unprecedented scale by the executive for the benefit of the executive,using archaic 16th century law thereby avoiding serious Westminster debate & scrutiny.

    The various Scotland Act(s) which underpin Holyrood & devolution incorporate or make reference to EU Acts including EHR rights.
    The damage which could be caused by the Westminster executive (currently the Tory department for Brexit) in reviewing Holyrood’s status could be terminal turning Holyrood into nothing more than a tax collection base and town hall debating chamber.

    The Tory party admit, but do not give specifics in the draft Bill, that LCMs will be required. However unless there’s a quick about turn by Theresa May & Mendacious
    Mundell, ScotGov will be quite within their rights to withhold LCM support until such times as devolved powers & other matters are resolved in favour of Holyrood. The last thing Theresa May will want is a Constitutional crisis, protracted negotiations with ScotGov & or Supreme Court hearings. Scottish Devolution will be tested to destruction.

    The Brexit Consequences , so far …….

    *European Human Rights protection gone
    *£350 million per weeK to NHS no longer a possibility, if it ever was
    *Regaining fishing rights, now a bargaining chip & not being devolved
    *CAP no replacement
    *Regaining control of our own laws & via the executive not Westminster or Holyrood
    *No automatic onward transmission of repatriated powers from EU to devolved nations
    *No annual EU payments but instead a humongous exit bill & probably further annual payments covering any negotiated transition period
    *No quid pro quo deal on import/export of cars as BMW firmly backing Merkle
    *Airbus wings production currently a logistical masterpiece will become a tariff nightmare
    *Air traffic rights for British carriers operating inter & intra European flights
    *Higher airfares due to current & probable future devaluation of sterling
    *Cessation of automatic rights to travel & live in any EU country
    *Cessation of air travel protection/compensation caused by delays & flight cancellations
    *Cessation of automatic protection & cover provided by free EHIC medical card
    *Insistence by EU on a written agreement covering Northern Ireland
    *Cessation of Membership of EURATOM directly affecting nuclear medicine diagnostics, treatments and research
    *The future of Financial Services and Banking currently in limbo

    The list grows longer with each passing week & the clock is fast approaching 29th March 2019. What an utter shambles and a completely unnecessary act of self harm courtesy of the Bullingdon boys

  10. Dan Huil

    Coming soon: A clear and definite choice between complete subservience to Westminster or independence for Scotland. Nothing in atween

  11. Norma Reid

    The British establishment may get away with lying to the people most of the time but not all of the time. Sooner or later they are found out. Every Scot who becomes aware of the lies and deceit of the British establishment soon becomes another yes voter for Scottish independence.

  12. Pam McMahon

    Some of us have been on the independence trail for a long, long time. We have been battered into shape by the unionist blows and kickings over the years, but we’re still here.

    I think a lot of this shite is coming as a bit of a revelation to younger independence supporters who did not have to live through the years when we barely kept the wee candle alight but, like us older fechters, will come through in the end game harder, more able to withstand blows and with a deeper determination to recover the independence of our country.

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