The Killing of Sister Joanna

Kirsty Blackman SNP MP (Aberdeen North) in the House of Commons

The Scottish Notional Party – Scotland’s main independence party is a shadow of its once revolutionary self – has left too many permanent stains on Scotland’s history to be considered a safe bet. Led by a First Minister who is happy to let slip that she feels pride in delaying a referendum to secure our liberty, now so overconfident she can cock-a-snook at her own voters with a smirk and a smug “I have all the time in the world”. One questions her understanding of how fragile is a career in politics. In this instance, pride before a fall has much to be desired.

Fearful of the challenge of securing self-governance, willing to accommodate Tory constraints on freedoms and food, the SNP cry “How dare they!”, and return to choosing footwear in the Comfy Slipper store, the fleecy sort, made ironically from sheepskin. This is governance by baby steps.

The denunciation of followers the SNP dislike, working with a unionist press, the hunting of Alex Salmond employing faked charges, promoting ferociously stupid Wesminster-loyal civil servants, the cover-up of an appropriated public fund, millions paid by the taxpayer for any number of blunders, and the brutal harrassment of her own MP, Joanna Cherry, add up to a hellish portfolio under Nicola Sturgeon’s tenure. Our future is now in the hands of a grossly inadequate SNP that feels the survival and reputation of their leader more important than Scotland’s existence.

We are now under threat of extinction as a country – the evidence suggests that is not an exaggeration – from plans concocted by a tyrannical English government that does not hide their intention to subjugate a neighbour nation. We look in astonishment at an SNP that cannot contemplate tearing up the Treaty of Union. It takes Alex Salmond of the ALBA party to issue a short video reminding the populace it is us, the people of Scotland, who decide on a referendum, not the Tories of England or their scummy dog handlers in Scotland. But we do not actually need a referendujm. A majority in Parliament is enough. Whether the UK government grants a Section 30 order or not is irrelevant. Indeed, there is no rule suggesting independence must issue from a referendum. Individual states and the international community will determine if the means of achieving autonomy is a peaceful, democratic process, and so endorse Scotland as a nation state.

Kevin McKenna, is of the earliest reliable Scottish journalists working for the unionist press to come out in support of independence. (Iain Macwhirter is the other.) McKenna hankers for no faux alternative, ‘Devolution Maximus’ or a confederancy of dominions. It’s nationhood restored or nothing.

In his latest column, McKenna sees the renewed harrassment of MP Joanna Cherry by the SNP in general – a ‘wicked’ silence – and SNP MP Kirsty Blackman’s public outbursts in particular, as unconscionable.

In the last few days Kirsty Blackman has renewed her attacks on the integrity of Joanna Cherry, accusing Cherry of ‘transphobia’, despite it being impossible to find evidence for the charge. Blackman incites her followers to join in the chorus which they do with gusto. Senior colleagues asked Blackman to removed her attack from the public domain, which she did, swiftly substituting a similar slur – a classic example of the non-apology apology.

At rock bottom, Blackman’s outburst is dangerously unprofessional, at worst it reminds voters that the SNP have trans people’s rights way ahead of Scotland’s freedom. In fact, some empty skulls argue that is how it must be, rights for a tiny minority soon removed by the colonial power because Scotland cannot protect itself.

Unfortunately, I cannot offer Blackman the right of reply because she blocked me from existence when I first suggested, diplomatically, she was lacking in professionalism. Clashing views, I contend, ought to be discussed face-to-face with Cherry and not in public.

To be candid, I have not hidden my uncertainty of Joanna Cherry’s detemination to create a path to independence any different from Nicola Sturgeon. As a constitutional lawyer she has done little that has reverberated to advance detailed plans or argue against SNP lethargy. Perhaps that is her way of showing loyalty to the party line. Recently, however, she has called out for something to be done and I publish her videod lecture at the foot of this essay. (See Notes.)

Cherry is the one SNP MP, unlike Nicola Sturgeon, who beat Boris Johnson, stopped him in his tracks from seizing power by illegal, anti-democratic means to close the UK Parliament for his political ends. And she achieved that victory via the courts. Many English voters shared her alarm. Aye, there are a few English out there who still believe Magna Carta has legitimacy.

Does Nicola Sturgeon perceive the urgency to withdraw from the Union, to ‘tear it up and throw it on the floor’ of the House of Commons, as Professor Alfred Baird suggests?

In the late sixties there was a very successful play turned film witten by the American Frank Marcus, about lesbianism, lesbian love and animosity, entitled ‘The Killing of Sister George‘. It starred Beryl Reid, playing ‘George’, and Susannah York. Here is the plot:

“June is an actress who portrays the popular Sister George in a British soap opera. The actress spends her time drinking and engaging in lesbian sex with her much younger lover Alice. A television executive decides she likes Alice and wants to write Sister George off the show. June watches as her behavior and insecurity drives Alice away.” Extract from IMDB

At the end of the film, her career in tatters, ‘George’ breaks into the television drama studio and begins wrecking the scenery, while mooing like a cow. As compensation for being written out of the soap drama, she had been offered a new role playing the voice of a cow in a children’s puppet series. Puppetry is SNP’s forte.

Scotland’s civil and constitutional rights are not a soap opera, but the leadership of the SNP are hard at it to make it so.

The title of this essay is paraphrased from Marcus’ play. To my mind, it has unsettling parallels. If readers reject the inferences, they cannot reject a rotten SNP behind a failed First Minister who has made Scotland’s freedom her last priority. Kevin McKenna has similar qualms, that the SNP has a way of shooting their best and strongest voices dead. His column is republished below.

Sovereignty rests with the people of Scotland. We are charged with creating a liberal community. We are charged with protecting human rights. We can create the splendour that is a free country. Nicola Sturgeon has failed; she has nowhere near ‘all the time in the world’.

THE ENEMIES OF INDEPENDENCE

Kevin McKenna

Perhaps there comes a point during the lifetime of a long-standing political administration when its ministers begin to assume they’re unassailable. There was more than a whiff of this during the Conservative Party conference in Manchester. It’s as though, having checked to see that the coast is clear and that there is not even a remote prospect of being caught, that they feel they can drop the pretence.

Previously, they might at least have paid heed to the timing of policy announcements or considered how they might be viewed by the wider electorate. “Does this seem callous? Will we be slaughtered for appearing not to care?”Yet, something in the tone and bearing of assorted Tory ministers at Manchester seemed to suggest that they had travelled well beyond the foothills of basic, human compassion. It was evident in Priti Patel’s speech that she and her party are now beholden to a new moral compass where a tone of defiance is no longer considered sufficient.

You now have to appear gleeful; to look as though you enjoy inflicting pain. Thus, she exulted in the end of free movement and boasted that she would be tireless in pursuing all means of turning back small boats in the English Channel, no matter the cost in human suffering.

Once, not even a Tory would question the impulse to defend asylum-seekers in their quest to reach Britain. This often, after all, is a country whose persistent looting of their homelands and meddling in their affairs had caused them to flee. Ms Patel now believes that even advocating for these poor scraps of humanity is immoral.

The inversion of what we once thought moral was maintained in Boris Johnson’s speech: that it was immigration that must be blamed for low wages and not the refusal of cash-rich companies and their billionaire owners to pay their workers properly. Thus the party of the family is the one which undermines it. For, how can you think of building a household and perhaps having children when there are no homes within reach of your scant and uncertain wages? And when withdrawing a modest £20 uplift will force many to choose between eating and heating?

A gift to the SNP

All of this plays to the social agenda of a Scottish Government which seeks to portray kindness and compassion. We might forgive the ineptitude of its ministers, apparent in their chaotic health and social care delivery or the school exams fiasco. At least their hearts are in the right place.

Lately though, it’s become clear that Nicola Sturgeon’s administration is afflicted by the entitled complacency of the Johnson regime, and for the same reasons: after 14 years in power the SNP are even more invulnerable than the UK Tories. This has hardened their hearts too. At least the Tories are good to their own. In Scotland, the SNP throw you to the wolves if you’re not considered to be unquestioning in your obeisance to Nicola Sturgeon. This party too has lost its moral compass.

This was evident in a re-tweet by Kirsty Blackman, one of its most senior politicians and true disciple of the Sturgeon creed. Thus she had endorsed a call for her far more able and successful colleague Joanna Cherry to be expelled from the party for expressing transphobic views. Belonging to a party with a messianic complex and which now believes itself infallible, Ms Blackman failed to consider its consequences and was forced to withdraw her injudicious re-tweet. Yet, in doing so she offered one of those non-apology apologies which make you wonder if she thinks we’re all stupid.

It looked like the start of a well-orchestrated and sanctioned campaign. This was given credence by a slew of well-kent SNP desperadoes piling in, eager to seek favour in their pitiful quest to access life-changing salaries at Westminster and Holyrood.

Blackman blacklisting

Ms Blackman must be aware that her colleague has been subject to four years of intimidation for defending those women’s rights currently threatened by some proposals in the Gender Recognition Act. This culminated in her being threatened with serious sexual assault earlier this year by a former party member who was charged and sentenced for the crime. His threats of sexual violence came just a few days after Nicola Sturgeon had made an extraordinary video denouncing transphobia in the party.

Then, as now, an insidious and orchestrated campaign targeting feminists for seeking to protect their sex-based rights was well underway. Simply espousing such rights in a reasonable manner is now considered sufficient in the eyes of Ms Blackman – and many others in the SNP – to be guilty of transphobia.

Ms Blackman partly owes her prominence in public life to a lifetime of campaigning for women’s sex-based rights by people like Joanna Cherry. To accuse Ms Cherry and some of her fellow campaigners of transphobia merely for being true to those principals is a lie and it’s a well-rehearsed lie that now threatens to disfigure this party.

It’s now reached a point where its many members who agree with Ms Cherry, including those who currently occupy high offices of state, must come out from behind private messages of sympathy and nail this wickedness publicly.

In this week, of all weeks, Ms Blackman’s intervention was reckless and a repudiation of the duty of care the public expects politicians to have for each other in the disposal of their public duties.

More complaints than British Rail

It’s astonishing that numerous complaints by Ms Cherry and several other party members about bullying and intimidation in the workplace remain un-investigated, often ignored by this party which endlessly proclaims its moral righteousness. Some of these relate to the conduct of Ms Blackman herself and Ian Blackford, the leader of the SNP’s Westminster group of MPs towards Ms Cherry.

One of the main attractions of an independent Scotland is a withdrawal from the sewer that runs beneath the Westminster Tories. Another attraction is this: that it provides an opportunity to ensure that the present high command of the SNP never again get to spit poison at women who seek to uphold the truth.

NOTE:

Joanna Cherry’s speech, Wales Governance Centre, 2020:  https://joannacherry.scot/index.php/routes-to-independence. McKenna is columnist for The National and Herald.

‘The Republic of Barbados’ – how Barbados achieeved independence and soon to be a republic: https://wp.me/p4fd9j-q5z

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31 Responses to The Killing of Sister Joanna

  1. ‘We are now under threat of extinction as a country.’

    The key issue surely is who will have the power to remove Nicola Sturgeon from her position of authority. She has all the levers needed to run the country, all the MSP’s needed to pass the bills, all the folks in control of the Scots judiciary, Police Scotland and the COPFS and a personally selected body of compliant ministers in her cabinet to give a semblance of stability to her government.

    People at the AUOB march in Glasgow had a few minutes of Ian Blackford to boost their cause. The YES movement have lost their way and numbers are falling quite dramatically. Why have the most senior members of the party and the FM herself, chosen to distance themselves from the rank and file?

  2. duncanio says:

    Nicola Sturgeon has said that she has both democracy and time on her side.

    However, what she has forgotten, or perhaps more accurately chooses to forget, is that Scotland’s Cause does not belong to HER. It belongs to US, the people of Scotland.

    She is merely the custodian of the leadership of the party which has a constitution in which article 2a states that the aims of the party are “Independence for Scotland; that is the restoration of Scottish national sovereignty by restoration of full powers to the Scottish Parliament, so that its authority is limited only by the sovereign power of the Scottish People to bind it with a written constitution and by such agreements as it may freely enter into with other nations or states or international organisations for the purpose of furthering international cooperation, world peace and the protection of the environment”.

    But, as usual with Nicola Sturgeon, she seeks to identify Scotland’s Cause with herself – La Cause c’est moi.

    That is what a cult of personality does. I am not even sure that she is aware of this character trait but it is a flaw … and it is a flaw that betrays the fact that she has come to believe her own publicity. That flaw is of the fatal variety as having no insight is surely the first step towards madness.

    On Democracy:
    The British are not interested in holding the moral high ground of democracy – they are not democrats!

    On Time:
    Sturgeon may be correct in having have time on her side … but only insofar as she eyes other career opportunities whilst Scotland burns. Scotland, and her people, do not.

  3. duncfmac says:

    In 2011 the SG went to great lengths to introduce a 10 year Autism Strategy founded on the need to address the years of underinvestment and deterioration of support services. Their interest and appetite for this simply died have way through, as their power and status rose. 2021 was the target date for the start of the new , fit for purpose support. Mathieson, the minister who signed the initial document and made the promises has since moved on to underperform in other ministerial roles. The Autism Strategy lies forgotten, just another racket by dishonest politicians who don’t even feel the need to respond to the let down and misled people affected. Of course things are worse than just the extreme arrogance and entitlement displayed, as demonstrated by the deceit and viciousness that are the hallmark of tyrants.

  4. rew1008 says:

    I am in agreement with you and Kevin McKenna about Kirsty Blackman. She has broken SNP rules of behaviour regarding fellow parliamentarians and retweeted a comment which called for the dismissal of Joanna Cherry. Her non-apology was forced from her, by whom is not clear and by what, would would suggest a possible sanction of some kind. What is very clear is that she remains in her post, is still tweeting, unashamedly, and has offered no form of contrition for her action. In other words nothing has happened to her to show the public that the SNP condemns her actions. This enables and emboldens others to attack Joanna Cherry and anyone who apeaks out for women. As Kevin McKenna said an Independeant Scotland ” ….provides an opportunity to ensure that the present high command of the SNP never again get to spit poison at women who seek to uphold the truth.”

  5. I’d love to know why Joanna Cherry remains in the SNP – she must have a worthwhile reason. I find it upsetting to see the puerile behaviour she’s subjected to by her own Party members and so-called “leader”.

    As I don’t buy The National any more I was pleased to read Kevin McKenna’s article. Good to know there are still journalists around whose work we can trust.

  6. jim4indy says:

    I’m sure it is not her intention at all, but certainly one of the effects of her remaining in the party is that it is showing the true colours of the trans fanatics and the extent of leadership capture.
    There must surely come a point when the majority in the SNP are sufficiently disgusted by all of this to turn away from the Sturgeon clique.
    If Joanna can hang in there, they have a focal point when they have finally had enough.

  7. No doubt at all that the SNP now occupies the same position in Scotland as the Tories do in England. This has been rumbling for a few years already and was finally confirmed at the last election. It’s shite being Scottish 🙂

  8. Robert McAllan says:

    Excellent Gareth, the truth is fast transitioning to excruciating pain, more the fact Sturgeon claims among other things to have ‘democracy’ on her side. It is a bizarre claim to make particularly as she has attempted to exorcise that very concept from within the SNP. Blackman and her ilk present no intellectual threat to Sturgeon and are unlikely to face any meaningful sanction, all the more shame on those within Westminster and Holyrood who sit idly by without demur.

  9. lorncal says:

    duncfmac: had they supported the autism initiative and put it into action, it would have highlighted the numbers of young people who are deemed to be on the autistic spectrum, and who are being transitioned. The link would have been made and they couldn’t have that, could they, when they had already promised the trans lobby the earth: all of female rights and spaces; with the transition of the young at the forefront. Call me a cynic, but you cannot champion autistic people’s rights and women’s rights and also trans rights (in comparison with both autistic people and even women, they have them all. I never thought I would ever say it, but the SG is actually worse than Johnson’s bunch of sharks because you know that the Tories are going to skin the poor alive because they always have.

  10. lorncal says:

    rew1008: Kirsty Blackman must rank as one of the most vacuous people ever to have been elected to office. Her breathless deliveries to camera, saying absolutely nothing original or even coherent, are cringeworthy. Joanna Cherry has more nous in her big toe than Kirsty Blackman has in her whole head. If she believes that a man can change sex and women ditto, she should not be allowed near a toon cooncil, let alone a parliament. People are entitled to their views, but they are not entitled to distort reality and force the rest of us to accept it. The electors of Scotland have a vote. They should use it wisely and not waste it on empty vessels. In a few years, they will have the opportunity to make these b******s sweat bucketsful. They are a disgrace to the name of elected representative and to being the representatives for Scxotland.

  11. lorncal says:

    Duncan Spence: spot on. Well said. So sad and so avoidable. Hell mend them.

  12. lorncal says:

    Can someone explain why you have to look like a Swede neep in order to signal your sexuality? If she is spotted anywhere near a dreel o neeps, she’ll find herself pulled up by her leafy stump and her roots chopped off. She’d best stay a good distance away from magnets, too. Just be your age, love, and ordinary. Like the rest of us. A tall poppy you ain’t.

  13. alfbaird says:

    Ms Cherry and her colleagues still appear unaware that the election of a majority of Nationalist MP’s in any colony, irrespective of whether it has a treaty or not, is de facto independence. Scotland has voted in three successive pro-independence majorities of Nationalist MP’s yet still they pledge themselves to do England’s bidding. Nationalist MPs are supposed to be there to assert Scottish sovereignty, not to continually give it away. You would think that those standing for election as Nationalists with the aim to liberate their people would know what they are there to do.

  14. lorncal says:

    Absolutely agree, Alf. I almost screamed when I read that this SNP person, and that SNP person “will respect the Supreme Court decision”. AAAARRRRGGGGHHHH. Who do they think they are respecting anything on our behalf? No, they are supposed to be disrespecting. Can you imagine the Estonian leader for independence saying, prior to their independence, “Oh, we must respect the Soviet will”. No, nobody but a Scot with no respect for him/herself could even contemplate saying such a thing. The total lack of any constitutional scrutiny whatsoever on our rights should be enough to cause this criminally negligent SG to fall.

  15. tombkane says:

    Kevin McKenna is nobody’s fool. And this is a blistering attack on a malevolent mysogynistic and misanthropic party that persists under the guise of being a political party.

    It’s like the cast of the movie version of cats making a stinker of a movie to keep the tabloids and the luvvies clutching pearls and eating cake.

    The much more serious, destruction of the good name of the SNP, is almost certainly the real point of the performance… As orchestrated by the Producers. And the cast of Cats don’t care. Many of them incapable of it.

    If we can pull it off, it would mean ejection from the Sturgeon cabal from the SNP, recovery of its good name, and partnership with the other independence parties before Christmas.

    The Henry 8th Powers are just coming to the boil now.

  16. tombkane says:

    Sorry… Predictive text…

    Meant “ejection of the Sturgeon cabal”… And I have no doubt it could be done.

    But it would need to be from response on the international stage to truth telling about the Salmond trial, the imprisonment of Craig Murray, the treatment of feminists, particularly Joanna Cherry, the approach to GRA in schools, the gender hypocrisy, the destruction of the SNP NEC and the sheer po-faced redaction of details from public record of behaviour in democratic duties…

    If The Atlantic or Democracy Now or Der Spiegel or Le Monde or the Irish Times told the true story of this SNP government, it would be a massive help.

  17. alfbaird says:

    tombkane: “The much more serious, destruction of the good name of the SNP,”

    Some international observers and agencies, the UN for example, might consider the continued colonial oppression and exploitation of an entire people and nation to be a serious matter too. In addition to the repeated failure of a democratically elected National Independence Party majority to actually declare independence.

  18. tombkane says:

    Alf, I don’t disagree with a word of that. Their behaviours in office have been at odds with what the SNP says on the tin. My point is that it is possible to have news momentum from truth-tellers to see this management structure of the SNP removed pronto. However, there is no news outlet in the UK capable of helping us.

    It would have to come from outside the Britpack. A big organisation… Or someone like Glenn Greenwald, or John Pilfer, or Noam Chomsky.

    I am in 100% agreement with you about the colonial subjugation of Scotland that’s been centuries in the making. The UN has only been around since 1947… I think it would take a lot to have them interfere with a founder member and a security council member at that.

    Tough times.

  19. twathater says:

    What frustrates me is the amount of PEOPLE who cling on to the SNP as some kind of religious artifact , it is a political party currently composed of traitors and collaborators whose contempt for ordinary Scots is palpable , many people continue to promote the mistaken and misguided belief that there are still some good people within the SNP , I have asked on different blogs and forums to name them and explain their reasons for NOT opposing or exposing the rank fetid corruption within THEIR party

    I watched a well known blogger on utube give a review of the march on Saturday where he was a speaker , he said that he was really angry at the divisiveness within the YES movement and we really needed to come together and forget about partisan politics , independence was ALL that mattered , which is admirable.

    He then went on to regale the audience with “OOR Nicola has everything in hand , Nicola has a calculator that will tell her when the best time is to hold a referendum , she has stated it will be in 2023 when all the old yoons will have died off replaced with indy supporting youngsters.

    The delusion and failure to see the truth is an encouragement to the traitor Sturgeon to just carry on with her lies and corruption because OOR NICOLA matters more than independence

  20. Grouse Beater says:

    There’s no doubing the profound disappointment in an SNP that has reduced its ambitions, deciding ‘good governance is the way to swing uncertain voters to independence. The risk is ‘good governance’. Get that wrong, as the SNP have to a terrible degree, and you lose voter respect and support.

  21. twathater says:

    And quite honestly Gareth the SNP SG’s past 5 years has only APPEARED moderately competent when you use WM’s gross incompetence as a comparable measurement , in actual fact it has been woefully inept , independence supporters have mistakenly allowed this situation to worsen due to our failure to expose and highlight the ineptitude of the coven , as we knew to be outspoken about their shortcomings only provided additional fuel for the yoonionists , as if they were short of fuel

    I actually stopped visiting Prof John Robertson’s blog due to his deliberate avoidance of any critical analysis of SNP’s governance

  22. Fearghas MacFhionnlaigh says:

    Linked vimeo worth a (half-hour) watch, in my opinion.
    Focussed on Ireland but of great relevance to Scotland —

    Bill Rolston: ‘Ireland, Colonialism and the Unfinished Revolution’

  23. alfbaird says:

    Excellent discussion with Prof Rolston, many thanks Fearghas. His book adds to earlier works describing Ireland’s colonisation (e.g. Edward Said) and indeed the UN’s similar view.

    This also adds to Prof Hechter’s ‘Internal Colonialism’ thesis depicting England as ‘core nation’ and the exploited under-developed Celtic periphery of Wales, Ireland and Scotland and their imposed Cultural Division of Labour. To this may be added Adam Price’s ‘Wales: the First and Final Colony’, plus Gareth’s essays on colonialism, and my own theoretical framework based book ‘Doun-Hauden’, each of which explains how colonialism destroys our peoples and nations, not least through, as Prof Rolston noted, the ‘colonial mindset’, which relates to Fanon’s ‘disease of the mind’.

    There is a contest now between the three colonies as to who will be the last to remain under English domination, for which Brexit seems to have given added momentum and impetus for a rapid exit as the core nation continues its inexorable slide downwards, dragging the ‘peripheral’ nations down with it, unless we press the ejection button.

    Ultimately such works are important if the people are to understand the real nature of their oppression and inequality, and the deceit of the union charade.

  24. lorncal says:

    Fearghas/Alf: does anyone really, truly believe in the Union, I mean the underlying philosophical reasons of being united? I very much doubt it. The colonized/Unionist mind of Scots is filled with fear, as is the mind of the English Nationalist. The former fears change, and especially a change in economic circumstances on a purely personal level that does not include anyone else, and cannot, because that anyone else will be sold out if push comes to shove. Same with the English Nationalist: fear of being driven from control, from power, of reduced economic circumstances, are what drives this type of person, too. Their loyalty is based wholly and solely on being at the top of the heap with the status quo and the fear of slipping back under change. It has nothing to do with anything other than unenlightened self-interest and ‘I’m all right, Jack!’. I don’t know how we can ‘persuade’ that mindset to change and to support independence. I don’t actually think we can change it or ‘persuade’ it either, so that, in itself, rules out another pre independence referendum. When the breakthrough comes, it will be swift and relentless and unstoppable, and these people will find themselves on the wrong side of history. Sometimes, it is right to resist change if that change is detrimental, particularly to the larger percentage of the people; sometimes, change is the only answer. It is the latter in our case.

  25. Grouse Beater says:

    Fearghas, yes, Professor Rolston knows the colonial mind, and sees the outcome of the colonial assuming only he is civilised.

    I have read Rolston’s work. He’s right, for I’ve said it myself, when I began writing about colonial Scotland my views were derided as delusion. I still get the occasional, bald unsubstantiated “yer a numptie. We are no a colony” – but people are beginning to understand how much of our culture, our aspirations are suppressed.

  26. Fearghas MacFhionnlaigh says:

    Mainly in response to Lorncal –

    I think that in principle (“philosophically”) the British Union could have worked, but in practice it has terminally failed due to structural imbalance and bad faith. The latter factor has proven most insurmountable. It is perhaps most self-evident in the insidiously calculated denial of broadcasting powers to a country the equivalent of Denmark. And, primarily via the BBC, the (fairly successful) attempt to enclose Scotland within a Truman Show dome of sophisticated deceit.

    I am not naive. We are up against cold-blooded deep-state Anglo-American geopolitics. I have no doubt at all that our demise is being relentlessly game-planned at highest levels. And also that Scotland has been seeded to saturation point with sleepers and agents provocateurs. Whether Nicola Sturgeon’s deep poisoning of the well is related to the foregoing, or just due to a grievous personality flaw, I do not know.

    Having said all that, I think we must resist any battle-weary disparagement en bloc of resistent neighbours as die-hard Brits or cowardly Scots. Almost certainly, the vast majority of our fellows have never read a political blog in their lives. Their heads — no doubt more often than not for overwhelmingly understandable reasons — are somewhere else.

    I was well into my teaching career before a mantra belatedly percolated up into my consciousness: “Don’t blame the kids – just learn to teach better.” But more than that: Stop seeing troublesome pupils as “my problems” and practice harder at respectfully engaging with them as young human beings often struggling with crushingly real problems of their own – mentally, domestically or whatever.

    As for philosophy, I could expound at wearisome length my views as to why there is an ongoing collapse of courteous democratic discourse in Western society, subsiding into non-negotiable lynch-mob threats of raw absolutist power. (Another time perhaps [joke]).

    But, anyway, if independistas are to die on any (Scottish) hill, let it be on the shining hill of humane integrity.

  27. alfbaird says:

    Lorncal

    Once the reality dawns it no longer seems appropriate to look at this in the context of nationalist versus unionist, but rather between colonizer and colonized (Memmi). The main difference here reflects the colonizer’s privilege and status, contrasted with the colonized’s inferiority and marginalisation. As colonialism is a cooperative venture, it requires the enlistment of much of the native bourgeoisie who ‘mimic the colonizer’ in terms of culture, language and values.

    In this pursuit there are more than enough volunteers, sufficient to fill most of Scotland’s private schools and Murrayfield stadium twice over. Thus we see develop a ‘superior’ (Anglophone) culture and an ‘inferior’ (Scots speaking, the latter not taught, hence made ‘invalid’) culture as privilege divider, with resultant socio-linguistic prejudice, a cultural division of labour, and the inevitable inequality and marginalisation of the colonized.

    The resultant colonial mindset of the colonized reflects the internalization of this imposed and absolutely false inferiority; i.e. the Scottish cultural cringe. The eventual realization by the people of their colonization and exploitation, if or when it comes about, is an event which finally exposes the two main protagonists and the oppressive nature of the relationship.

    This is when the colonized reclaims his sovereignty and hence independence and with that grasps his moribund culture and rusted mother tongue, for the language of the colonizer now ‘burns his lips’.

  28. lorncal says:

    Fearghas: yes, I agree. If there was to be a Union, it could have been settled with good faith and absolute integrity, promoting equality, parity and equity. That however, was not done because England wanted the Union as a colonizer wants the colonized. The reasons for agreeing to the Union, on England’s side, are, more or less, exactly the same as they were in 1707: security; locking the backdoor; war fodder. Now, added to those are: resources, both terrestrial and maritime; and actual territory, both terrestrial and maritime; along with remoteness from the centre for weapons of mass destruction. There never actually was a point at which the Union could ever have been an equal one, not from England’s point of view then, and England-as-the-UK’s point of view now. It’s the sad truth that so many will not acknowledge and that the SNP government has no intention of acknowledging on their behalf, let alone the Unionist parties.

  29. lorncal says:

    Indeed, Alf. We seem to be inching nearer and nearer to Ireland’s situation pre 1916, with the colonized north being actively hived off by Unionists-as-colonists. Kindness and live and let live become traps in which to ensnare the soon-to-be-colonized or actually-colonized. I do believe that the world has marginally more good in it than bad, but there are a helluva lot of bad players and bad actors that you simply cannot give an inch to, or they will take a mile.

  30. arayner1936 says:

    My apologies if this is not the place to air my confused views or if it is already too late to comment on this thread but this is the result of listening to the podcast by Gareth and Alf Baird, along with Roddy and iain Lawson this morning which lead me back to reread this and the comments, particularly those from Alf, Lorna and tombkane.

    On the one hand it is great to see the growing acceptance in parts of the independence movement ot the idea that idea that Scotland is, de facto if not legally, a colony but it is a totally different matter to get that idea through to those who are happy with the current situation because they benefit from it and those who do not recognise it, often because they are concerned with the problems of day to day to day living or because they accept the unionist propaganda served them daily by the press and BBC.

    There is growing apathy regarding independence partly as there re no moves from the government to promote it and partly because we are at an impasse with opinions fairly equally divided. Any increase in support that there might have been is ebbing away.

    I would dearly like to see our government make an announcement before the world’s media with the opportunity of Cop26 but that is unlikely to happen. Even if someone has enough dirt on the FM to persuade her to make the grand gesture which would give her an unrivalled place in Scottish History, perhaps before stepping down, we would still be left with the current nest of vipers poisoning both Holyrood and the Westmister contingent of Scottish MPs.

    Were she to stand down there would still be Robertson, Smith and the rest of those whose priorites are policies which will cause division and misery, possibly for generations if they are not stopped, They do not want independence and a fairer, more inclusive and more just society.

    Is is easy to despair of the desperate situation Scotland is in now but we must hope for the break though which Lorna suggests will be swift and devastating when it comes. It cannot come soon enough in my opinion. If anyone has anything to bring down the whole infected cabal, I wish they would come forward.

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