The Scottish Independence Convention (SIC) has the superficial look of an obvious successor to Yes Scotland. In fact, it seems to already have appointed itself as the ‘official’ umbrella organisation representing the entire Yes movement. Which is problematic. Not only because SIC, quite inexplicably, includes elements which pose a real threat to the reputation of anyone who associates with them, but for reasons of democratic legitimacy.
What is the basis of SIC’s authority? How representative is it of the Yes movement as a whole? What mandate does it hold? How can it possibly acquire such a mandate? How likely is it that the rest of the Yes movement will accept SIC’s self-declared status?
Some of these issues have been raised by GA Ponsonby on IndyRef2. Particularly the fact that the SIC board appears to be dominated by the very clique of passionless technocrats, supercilious intellectuals and dogma-bound radicals which has recently sought to claim ownership of the Yes movement to the exclusion of any and all who decline to embrace their narrow agenda.
Personally, I now harbour grave doubts about the Scottish Independence Convention. I am concerned about the judgement of those who have invited onto the organisation’s board groups whose provenance is questionable and individuals whose character is dubious.
I have great difficulty seeing how SIC can credibly speak for the grass-roots Yes movement when it is so predominantly given over to a relatively small but inordinately assertive faction founded on a simplistic belief that ‘radical’ is synonymous with ‘righteous’.
Most of all, I worry that SIC has no popular mandate; nor any means of acquiring one. I worry, too, that the SIC – and thereby the aforementioned faction of ‘righteous radicals’ – intends to ‘piggy-back’ on the electoral mandate of the SNP in a way that will be found unacceptable by the party’s membership and considered inappropriate by the general public.
In order to succeed, the independence movement needs effective political power. In order to be effective, that political power must have democratic legitimacy. It is not obvious how SIC might achieve this. It’s not even clear that the importance of democratic legitimacy is recognised by those in charge of SIC.
As a member of the SNP, and with the greatest of respect to both Alex Salmond and Elaine C Smith, I could not possibly agree to party funds being diverted to the Scottish Independence Convention as it is presently structured.Views: 6893
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