Not in my backyard
Throwing the term fascist into conversations is easily done without defining what we mean by ‘fascist’, but there’s no doubting the disenfranchised and the disaffected are adopting extreme ideologies out of frustration with their lot, and political charlatans are quick to exploit that anger.
Look at the head-butting goat that is Ruth Davidson, leader of Scotland’s gang of jeering, goofy Tories who take instruction from London headquarters. She might call her antics passionate unionism but I see neo-fascism, a disdain for civil rights, boosting corporate power, suppressing dissent and collective bargaining, rampant cronyism and corruption, the SNP depicted as ‘the enemy’, and obsession with British nationalism over everything.
You can’t approve as local councillors sociopaths spouting extremism and hate, as she has done, smile benignly on the DUP demanding loyalty money from the public purse, and justify it all as politics. The Tories have made a Faustian pact with the Devil.
We see the rise of passionate politics just not in the way we expected it to materialise.
The endless corruption of Westminster
Successive scandals consume Westminster: falsified expenses, principles for hire, buyout jobs in big business, sexual sleaze, warmongers galore selling arms, and £4 billion to refurbish the Palace of Westminster while London’s charred Grenfell Tower stands a symbol of British values. No wonder the populace of Scotland is scunnered.
With the age of cynicism has reappeared the worst characteristics in human behaviour. Every administration in Europe condemns this sinister development except Westminster Tories. They encourage it, vigorously. Listen to the sneering in every sentence spoken by Jacob Rees-Mogg, his odium for anything he thinks unBritish, whatever that is.
Dreams of empire
England dreams of empire where only cockney whites own corner shops and everybody knows the rules of cricket, Somerset types weave baskets and make scrumpy, broadcasters produce endless tales of life in the Yorkshire Dales, and Elgar plays on.
Blowhard Nigel Farage played on England’s deep-seated anxiety of life without warm beer, pointing to the flood of refugees fleeing from proxy wars we helped start, and convinced his countrymen anything in a turban is the problem.
English angst quotes Oswald Mosley’s aristocratic authority and Enoch Powell’s ‘rivers of blood’ as far sighted. Can any sane person think the United Kingdom is worth retaining as one homogenous happy, purified nation?
There is no coherence to the English monomaniac “Take our country back”. What do they mean? Take Orkney back? Take Northern Ireland back? That’s the last thing English want. They want rid of Northern Ireland. And Scotland doesn’t want any more Orange Lodge refugees taking up residence in Ayrshire.
When freedom means the opposite
We could not have left Europe at the worst time, for us and for them – when its ideals are crying out for greater democratisation. The rise of neo-fascist xenophobia sees people haters securing parliamentary seats, a situation formerly unthinkable.
In Greece, for instance, Golden Dawn, widely considered to be a neo-Nazi political party, is sitting at almost 10% in the latest opinion polls. The PVV Party of Holland is led by a prancing, convicted racist, Geert Wilders, while in dear old Blighty scummy opportunist and never charged racist Farage, supported by thugs from the British National Party and English Defence League, is feted and promoted by the BBC.
In Austria the Freedom Party – how easily the far-Right abuse language – has attained the status of a minority party. Spain’s extreme right-wing administration under the fascist puppet Mariano Rajoy dances the flamenco with Franco’s ghost. It dishes out jail sentences to law abiding dissidents, interferes with elections, beats up its own citizens, and imposes draconian laws on Catalonia and its independence supporters to ‘encourage’ them to vote Spain’s way.
Fascists by another name
I can hear Italian-born Jew Primo Levi weep, chemist, writer and Auschwitz survivor, “I warned you, I warned you all, but no one listened”. He saw fascism rear its ugly head again as far back as the eighties. It threw him into deep depression. What else was his plunge down a cold Turin apartment stairwell to his death but an act of suicidal despair?
We see fascism eyeing up Scotland. Fascists rejected by the electorate, Tory, Ukip, the right-wing press, they smear and lie. Rejected by voters, they brand and burn until people think there is no smoke without fire.
Reinstatement of Scotland’s parliament ended England’s maximum colonial command. The same argument holds for the Welsh and Northern Irish Assembly. Bereft of full, unregulated power authoritarian energy will express itself in imperial longings, witness the movement ‘England for the English”, and the truly sinister group ‘These Islands’.
What can we do?
Scotland must remain part of Europe not only for sound economic reasons, but to join with ideologically-committed Europeanists in an uprising of the democratic principle. We share the same predicament, together we can plan ways to overcome it.
A second referendum is not only unavoidable, but critical if Scotland is to protect itself and not be overrun and neutralised. How else do we stay partners with Europeans, with any nation, for that matter? We must decide our future, one enshrined in the Declaration of Arbroath; the people are sovereign.
Why not stay in the UK if as bad as Europe?
That’s easy to answer. While ruled by Westminster, whatever Westminster wants England to be, Scotland has to follow. We are not able to make our own choices. And should we not be free to set an example to our English friends that they admire and can emulate? As it is, English are moving to Scotland for their sanity!
As Mussolini says in the quotation at the head of the essay, the populace “don’t know what’s good for them” – hence, we have Westminster and Wombles, such as the Scottish Secretary of State, David Mundell, Scotland’s own Uriah Heep.
Making our presence felt
The Scottish Government should find a way to be part of a transnational commission with the core aim of achieving a new, democratic constitution for the European Union, done in tandem with composing Scotland’s own Constitution for an independent state.
The burgeoning organisation DiEM25 already exists for such a purpose, it’s goal is EU democracy by 2025. It is not enough for the SNP to say it wishes to stay with Europe it has to propel that ideal actively. They should appoint our own European commission, keep the public involved in the debate, publishing the main decisions of regular meetings, not minutes – never give detail to the right-wing to parse and misinterpret.
No matter what lies the odious UKip says about the EU, a great deal of it is democratised. But the EU Bank is not. That has to be a prime target. They way it loans money is guaranteed to spread poverty, leaving nations in hock for decades. Just ask Greece.
Brexit, an essentially English affliction
In Scotland the Left chokes on its principles, unable to articulate anything except an English-first agenda. England’s Jeremy Corbyn doesn’t know what he wants for the UK and Europe. He has to make up its mind soon. Scotland and England are moving in opposite directions, fast.
In the post-colonial world England had lost its place. The Good Friday Agreement ended the pretension of the British state to be rulers of Northern Ireland. When you are forced to go cap in hand to the neo-fascist DUP for support the end is truly nigh. The Republic no longer fears British reprisal against a united Ireland.
A permanently broken UK and a disintegrating body politic in Westminster has us in deep uncertainty. Some call it a crisis of democracy. English robbed of the welfare state, free education, and an easy route to housing, the very basis of a caring society, the man and woman in the street is living a precarious existence. There’s is a dearth of good jobs, and too much personal debt. Rebellion is in the air. Windows will be broken.
The SNP has a great opportunity for radical reform. It finds itself on the prow of change. Moreover, there’s enough sympathetic English support for Scotland’s political priorities. Maybe this time incomers will vote Yes to protect it.
The passion and the paradox
The passion that we’ve unleashed to see Scotland a better place is fired by England’s moral and political collapse. It is a paradox of our disrupted times. We have the vision and the will socially, democratically and economically to remake nationhood again. But time is running out to take possession of that green field. It might soon be overrun.
There is only a short distance still to go. To paraphrase Thucydides: “We have the singular merit of being brave to the utmost degree to attain the ideal.”
Our future really is in our hands.