International law does not recognise the phrase “Once in a generation”. For a nation state to constrain voting rights in another country, that’s colonialism. It will be difficult for some people to accept that description because they do not see police around them enforcing compliance, but colonialism it is in intent and effect.
Austerity is a form of colonialism.
Austerity seeks to impoverish, its outcome a constant anxiety to make ends meet with no time or energy for protest or rebellion. We bend to the will of the power elite.
Austerity means people lose their homes. Austerity means social services cannot function properly. Austerity means schools cannot afford books or facilities or outdoor activities. Austerity blocks sovereignty, we become a colony of the financial power. Austerity reduces people’s participation in democracy.
In international law colonialism is a crime against humanity.
The British Tory government represented by their prime minister, the lick-spittle lackey Secretary of State for Scotland, and Ruth Davidson, Tory Scottish branch leader, frustrate the mandate of the people of Scotland. That’s their job, after all.
Having rejected proposals from the Scottish Government for Scotland to remain in the single market, refused joint negotiations with Brussels, Scotland is told to take a hike.
There is a term for ruling over people while preventing them from being part of the political process that governs their lives – colonialism. There is no principle in international law more fundamental than the right of all peoples to self-determination.
“Self-determination “denotes the legal right of people to decide their own destiny in the international order” – US Legal Information Institute.
The Tories and Labour party dare not denounce a plebiscite. So they resort to delay – “now is not the time”. Or they brazen it out with macho threats to block progress.
To a colonial regime faced with insurrection no time is the right time to accede to civil rights, therefore, logically, any time is the right time. The date of a second Referendum on Scotland’s constitution is for the Scottish Government to choose.
No jurisdiction? Remove voters
The Tory Party has no reservations about delaying a plebiscite until after conclusion of Brexit negotiations by which time – and this is critical – they will have disenfranchised tens of thousands of EU nationals in Scotland from voting in it. That is a grave concern.
It’s likely EU nationals living and working in Scotland will vote to secure their right to remain in Scotland, ergo, for independence. Hence, the Tory tactic has to be interpreted as an effort to remove voters from the register. The UK government has already approved the same fate for non-British nationals in England.
Scotland’s referendum is a justified reaction to the deceit of the UK government under David Cameron. Cameron, endorsed by the right-wing press, promised rejection of self-determination guaranteed membership of the European Union. Scotland was given a “cast iron, copper-bottomed” promise and Westminster broke it with impunity.
The theft of rights
Now that England has taken itself out of the EU, Scotland stands to be a casualty, economically and culturally. You need only think of farming subsidies, research grants, and the Edinburgh International Arts Festival, to gain a glimmer of the turmoil in store. Scotland has been cheated and not for the first time.
We witness the British government in full colonial mode. It refuses to give up its privileges. It refuses to pull back from its self-appointed authority. Tories talk now of ways to ‘play out’ a referendum, delay essentially another tool of oppression.
Colonialism is illegal by international law
Freedom to choose is a right enshrined in international law with its inclusion in the UN Charter in 1945. Article 1 of the Charter states that one of the purposes of the United ations is: “To develop friendly relations among nations based on respect for the principle of equal rights and self-determination of peoples.”
In the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, this was made even more explicit: “All peoples have the right of self-determination. By virtue of that right they freely determine their political status and freely pursue their economic, social and cultural development.”
Self-determination is not a utopian ideal. It is a legal right
It’s Scotland’s right to choose its socio-economic future, not the British government’s. An SNP government ought to be banging a desk top at the United Nations, arguing Scotland is colonised, demanding we be registered as a colony, freed a nation state once more.
The Tory party seeks to retain empowerment over all peoples in the UK. That includes Scotland and Wales, and should include Northern Ireland too, but there is a growing opinion Northern Ireland will be part of the Republic of Ireland in time. Preserving their colonial domination is much more important to the British Government than having a legitimate claim to being a democratic state that values human rights.
Tories and British nationalists are on the wrong side of history.
(1) A Euro-wide movement is underway led by economist Yanis Varoufakis, called DiEM25 – democracy in Europe Movement by 2025 – supported by many EU members of parliament to democratise lingering bureaucratic elements.
(2) Article written in tandem with ‘England’s Neo-Colonialism’ : http://wp.me/p4fd9j-iD0