Attitude and intent

As we would expect and, indeed, as is proper for the First Minister of Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon does no more than hint at the threat to the Scottish Parliament. But be in no doubt that the threat is real.

The attitude of the British establishment to Holyrood is evident in Theresa May’s contemptuous disregard for decisions taken by our democratically elected representatives and in the efforts of the British parties to deny the legitimacy of both the Scottish Parliament and the Scottish Government. It is evident also in the disrespectful treatment of our First Minister and the manner in which the British print and broadcast media report – or fail to report – the work of the SNP administration.

It is evident in the denial of Scotland’s distinctive political culture. Or, where it cannot be denied, the barely disguised implication that, being different from British political culture, it must perforce be inferior.

As I said back in March 2016,

Because, as a British nationalist, you do not consider Scotland’s democratic institutions to be worthy of respect. At best, you consider them inferior and a presumptuous imposition upon the established order. [link]

None of this is new. Neither is it idle speculation or trivial scaremongering. In fact, the antipathy of the British establishment is the politically obvious defensive response. Given the nature of the British state, antagonism toward Scotland is precisely what we would expect. In October 2015 I wrote the following,

Make no mistake. The British establishment is out to destroy the SNP, which is regarded as a threat to the structures of power, privilege and patronage which define the British state. And they don’t care what damage is done to our parliament, our institutions, our economy and our people in the process. They are determined to put Scotland back in its box. And the only truly effective means we have to resist them is to bolster the democratic mandate that we afford the SNP. [link]

In the aftermath of the No vote in the first independence referendum, I had this to say,

The British establishment thought that would be an end of things. There would still be the “nuisance” of the SNP to be dealt with and, obviously, the threat from Scotland would have to be neutralised by various means, such as undermining confidence in major institutions seen as symbolic of Scotland’s distinctive political culture and using devolution legislation to effectively cripple the Scottish Parliament and Scottish Government. But it was anticipated that it would soon be exploitative business as usual. [link]

The British establishment’s assault on Scotland’s democratic infrastructure was readily foreseeable. The British state simply could not tolerate this challenge to the dogma of ‘no other way’. The SNP government’s determination to maintain a genuine public health service and its unshakeable commitment to the principle of universality are a growing embarrassment to a British political elite which claims that there is no alternative to its ideology of austerity and privatisation.

And, of course, there is always the threat posed by the independence movement. Another quote from an old article.

I would contend that the most important factor in the rise of Scotland’s progressive independence movement has been the fact that a distinctive political culture has evolved in Scotland because the democratic processes and institutions native to Scotland have been more effective in translating the attitudes of the electorate into public policy. [link]

What we are seeing now is the British establishment’s rancid attitude towards Scotland being translated into malicious intent. We cannot afford to be complacent about the inevitability of this malicious intent turning into aggressive action.

In the run-up to the 2015 UK general election I expressed the view that it was all a question of trust. I posed a question which is, if anything, even more relevant and urgent now than it was then. It is a question which should be in the minds of everyone in Scotland as they stand with pencil poised over the ballot paper.

Who are we to trust to truly represent, defend and advance the interests of the people of Scotland in a British state which is increasingly hostile to Scotland’s political and social institutions; intolerant of our distinctive political culture; and contemptuous of our aspirations?

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6 thoughts on “Attitude and intent

  1. Abulhaq

    The British state needs Scotland for the land and territorial waters. The people can go to hell. Unionism encouraged emigration, if not checked by independence it could do so again.
    The interface between Scottish and British interests is raw and the system has no emollient.

  2. michael b

    Peter, I have said it elsewhere Scotland is now part of a Cromwellian Union. It’s worth reading the historical settlement foisted on 17th Century Scotland by Cromwell. A Scotland that was more Presbyterian Protestant (for what’s that worth to loyalist unionists) than our modern society. The Cromwellian union was of course a precursor to the real deal of 1707. Prior to that union, the executive: King William failed to help his Scottish subjects at Darian; England threatened war and the Aliens Act if the Scots did not agree to the Hannover succession. The Aliens Act is a must read since that’s what English are threatening again.

  3. commonoldworkinchap

    I would like to add that it is not only the British state and the media that we are up against in
    our struggle to be our own country. It is the English people also. I work ,and have worked,
    down south for a number of years. I have many English friends. Any attempt at having a
    debate about Scottish Independence is futile with a lot of the folk down here. I will probably
    be called a anti English racist or the like.

    For hundreds of years the drip drip drip of Rule Britannia and the like has had an effect as
    you would expect. Scratch the surface and the exceptionalism which has been bred into
    the population is all too evident. We are seeing the very people with the least prospects
    vote for the very same parties who will punish them more. It is always the fault of someone
    else ( usually foreigners ). The whole façade is crumbling and the reaction is very telling.
    The British state AND a lot of the unionist public can not or will not accept that the UK is
    not exceptional , and resort to being aggressive when anyone suggests this.

    One saving grace is that the kleptocracy and the establishment , who run things, have made such an arse of the military that it is now a joke. I dread to think what could happen with
    these numpties with a large military.

    It bothers me when guys I have known for years think it is ok to shout try to bully me into
    silence. It worries me when intelligent people with wives, kids, mortgage etc. spout the same drivel the MSM spew out. It amazes me when grown men think that attacking
    Nicola Sturgeon or Alex Salmond with playground names and presume that the debate has
    been won.

    Let us be honest with ourselves, it is not only the MSM and all the machinery of the British
    state which is against our wish for Independence, it is also a large number of normal
    folk. While in no way would I propose to become nasty, it is time to call a spade a spade.
    Rational debate has been shut down . May has slipped up IMHO in calling this election.
    With a majority returned for independence, we should just leave them to it and declare
    ourselves an independent country.

  4. David MacGille-Mhuire

    Worth remembering are previous actions by WM towards their “unruly ‘Scotch subjects'”.

    To wit and post the Culloden massacres (much later than those bloody events and in the early 20th century):

    * The sending in of British troops to Glasgow

    * The simultaneous sending in of British naval vessels to point their guns at George Square from the Clyde Estuary

    * The confinement and disarming of Scottish troops. The latter placed under armed British guard in Maryhill Barracks

    * The invasion of the Western Isles by British marines to quell the Crofters’s revolt

    * Other military actions by British Dragoons against the Scottish citizenry which pre-date the above examples

    My point?

    Never underestimate the capacity of the British state for ruthlessness, and without the scrutiny of the EU, WM as a Theresa May uber Tory/neo-Fascist fiefdom may be inclined to repeat these playbook power plays should their serial deviousness tactics fail them.

    In our favour, the stewardship of Holyrood under the wise heads of the SNP government, our current mass representation in the shape of the SNP MPs at WM, and our crop of SNP MEPs In the EU who have built and cemented relationships there which, democratic solidarity willing, will survive the madness of the AngloBritNat Brexit.

    Lastly?

    The indominatible will of the citizens of Scotland fromst wherever they rainbow-like hail.

    Thus, bring it on Ms May (to borrow the battle-cry of the long forgotten BritLab WM puppet Holyrood FM, Ms Wendy Alexander).

    Intriguing and exciting times for one to live in given Scotland seems to be in the vanguard of a global movement towards genuine mass democracy anent and agin the neo-fascist/neo-Con-Lib anti-democratic wannabe “elites”.

    Slainte agus failte yin and a’.

  5. Bibbit

    My ears prick up each time May says, ‘We must strengthen our Union.’ She has said this often in her elctioneering. That a vote for the Tories is a vote to ‘Strengthen the Union’.

    I fear she is planning to do this by dismantling Holyrood asap; and pushing ahead with EVEL.

    All powers returned from Brussels will go to London and there they will stay and she will then begin taking powers gradually away from Holyrood. Fishing and agriculture powers will go back to London from Holyrood in, she will say, the national interest for unified agricultural and fishing trade agreements across the UK.

    Transport will be taken back in the national interest to secure trade deals across the UK, all in the UK national interest.

    Environment and land use planning will be taken back to London and this will include fracking to allow private companies to frack in Scotland, all in the UK’s national interest.

    That’ll leave us things like: education, NHS, housing, sports & arts, police, fire. Aye you can run a country and grow an economy on just those poison chalices.

    Oh and they will definitely abolish the Barnett Formula.

    Their aim will be to utterly destroy and impoverish Scotland so that we never again think to imagine the ludicrous notion that we could do better holding all economic powers and voting for a government the people in Scotland choose.

    Britnats, in their zealotry, will engage in the wholesale destruction of Scotland’s burgeoning confidence in itself citing, ‘I’m a proud Scot but… I am a Britnat and I will destroy Scotland and my fellow Scots, in order to remain a Britnat.’

    England needs our nuclear arms facilities to stay on UN Security Council.

    THis GE will decide Scotland’s future and that of our children and grandchildren for the next 30 years at least. God help us if Scotland votes in 12 Tory MPs in Scotland as the Times is predicting today!

    Chillingly the street crowds booed Scotland at the mere mention of its name in England this week. Scotland is England’s public enemy no 1.

  6. ScotsCanuck

    ” …….Chillingly the street crowds booed Scotland at the mere mention of its name in England this week. Scotland is England’s public enemy no 1″

    There within lies the strategy of the Tory (May) Government, we are now ‘the Enemy within’ (with reference to Thatcher) ….. I should qualify, we who define ourselves as Scottish not British.
    If your not “Red, White & Blue” Union Jack through & through ….. then you are alien …. akin to treasonous. Such is the venom of their words …. and words do matter.

    In my humble opinion, this only reinforces my belief in my country and it’s peoples to decide their common & collective destiny, democratically and under the rule of law.

    I hope and pray this will come to pass peacefully … but with the rhetoric spewing from those who should know better, into the lugs of those who don’t ….. I have grave reservations.

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