Skye Vote Song

I haven’t posted for a couple of days – I’m scared to in case David Torrance reads it. didn’t want to say anything on Thursday because I know the blog has a wide readership and the Electoral Commission said I might influence how people voted…

So instead I had an epic lunch with VERY famous music personality, so famous we both had to wear shades in the Merchant City.

Now, on a clear blue morning, I’m preparing for the drive to Skye for a Yes meeting in the Aros Centre – with Arthur Cormac, Ian Blackford, Jean Urquhart and Natalie McGarry who isn’t speaking to me after Hibs beat the Accies. I’m making a weekend of it with a wedding tomorrow, so I’ll be dancing during the Heinekin Cup and the Champions League but where better to be on a May Saturday than Sleat?

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The Wine Club Platinum Loyalty cards have gone out for global dispatch. If you haven’t got one, it’s not too late – check out the Club Page next door. Apart from the international subscribers, and those at home – even London! Who’s George Osborne? – I’m proud of having members in Arran, Eigg, Lewis and Orkney. Where are you, Shetland?

By the way, did you notice how the BBC kept saying Farage had great publicity ahead of the vote. Who gave him that? He was never off the airwaves and that affects Scotland too where we share so much of the output and yet his party are pretty marginal here. This is another area where the BBC has to address its news judgment. Assuming UKIP scores well in this election, it will be massively because of the publicity given to him by the taxpayer via the BBC. Which also shows you how I crucial broadcasting is in our referendum.

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There’s a voice saying we’ve got to leave now so wish me luck as I deliver a Tirade of Hate at the Skianachs at the Aros Centre 7.30.

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Turn! Turn! Turn!

Some interesting transformations this weekend. The revelation undergone by David Martin MEP contradicts the last two and a half years of denial of the reality of Scotland’s place in the EU. The other is the emergence of journalist David Torrance as a Unionist commentator rather than an impartial observer, the basis on which all his previous work had been based.

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By far the most important is the key change adopted by Martin in relation to our membership after a Yes vote. It was, to be blunt, stating the obvious but it finally blew away the synthetic hysteria of Better Together that Scots would lose their citizenship, be thrown out of the club, go to the end of the queue, struggle to negotiate a deal and be left outside rotting on our own while the rUK sailed on undaunted. I know the dinosaurs like Struan Stevenson are clinging to the myth because that’s all they have left, but there is no mistaking the importance of Martin’s announcement. He is by far the most senior Scottish figure in Brussels and the most experienced.

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Which is why I couldn’t accept his previous wilful twisting of the principles of the EU as an institution and a force for inclusion and integration. It was a denial of everything we know to be true and was, as we now know, unsustainable.

The open and sometimes tacit acceptance by Unionists who should know better of absurd and insulting remarks by EU officials, notably the discredited claims of Barroso, also opened our Unionist MEPs to ridicule.

I see David Martin now suggests that wasn’t deliberate at all, merely a misunderstanding due to Barroso’s lack of English skills. I didn’t get that impression at all from the Andrew Marr programme. Indeed Marr himself justified his own support for Barroso’s position by telling us he’d spoken to him at length off-air. We learned over the weekend that there has been no legal work done by the Commission on this subject so Barroso had no recent basis for his view. Loose talk indeed but taken at face value and championed by Better Together nevertheless as it did down Scotland.

I’m not sure why all this has changed for David Martin, though. Is he presenting this as no-change? Is he claiming this has been his position all along?

Here he is only last November. ‘Scotland will have to reapply and even the fast lane to EU membership is a long road… Pro-independence supporters are less keen to admit that as a new applicant to the EU, Scotland would not have an opt-out from the Euro and would be obliged to join when it met the economic conditions. The opt-out to Schengen’s open borders would also be lost…’

Yet here is the Sunday Herald: ‘he effectively distanced himself from claims by the Better Together campaign – which he supports – that Scotland might fail to become a member of the EU after independence or be rejected by the European Commission.

He also said that Scotland will not have to join the euro or the Schengen common travel area in the event of a Yes vote. My view is that Scotland, of course, would get into the EU eventually. It’s not automatic, and would take several rounds of negotiations, but they’re not going to force us to join Schengen. They’re not going to force us to join the euro.

I think that is a step-change, an undeniable shift in position which brings him very closely towards alignment with the SNP position which has never been ‘automatic and seamless’ but that it would be negotiated from within and therefore had an element of automaticity not available to new applicant states. Scotland’s case, as David Martin now seems to confirm, is exceptional in that the country starts out meeting all the conditions for membership through its inclusion via the British state.

But, again, why now? Well, we vote on Thursday in the Euro elections. Does he feel the need to get the record straight in advance rather go into the vote on a false premise, one he knows won’t bear scrutiny later and which will be pressurised further if the SNP win three seats to Labour’s two.

Is there a risk after the election that the Commission might publish some legal advice on this issue and make him look silly? Indeed it’s only recently that the European Parliament had to stop him from ensuring that Scotland would not be an exception.

Martin planned to write a report arguing that any new state would be automatically outside the European Union and would be forced to reapply for membership…

He has so far relied on the Barroso doctrine…. ‘when part of the territory of a Member State ceases to be a part of that state, e.g. because that territory becomes an independent state, the treaties will no longer apply in that territory. In other words, a newly independent region would, by the fact of its independence, become a third country with respect to the Union and the treaties would, from the day of its independence, not apply anymore on its territory.’

So this all sounds very different and of course it chimes with Lib Dems MEP Sir Graham Watson that it’d be politically unacceptable for Scotland, as a territory which is already part of the EU, to have to join from scratch. He is the first senior pro-Union figure to speak against the UK Government’s position that an independent Scotland would have to reapply to join the EU. ‘You can debate about the legal aspects in many different ways but politically, you cannot throw outside the EU a territory that is already part of the EU…’

This is a continuing realignment of Unionist opinion to shadow that of the nationalists. It may be late in the day from David Martin but it returns to him some of the credibility lost over the previous years trying to put obstacles in the way of his country’s advance if there’s a Yes vote.

And you must have noticed a sharper and committed tone to David Torrance’s output recently. So pervasive is he, he can’t be missed. Good for him. He’s been one of the best analysts in the debate. But I’ve sensed a move away from the theoretical and historical to the clearly one-sided and opinionated….the kind of writing I prefer. Today for example in the Herald (Nationalists determined to rewrite inconvenient history) we get an all-out assault on the SNP and the bête noir of Alex Salmond who ‘has always delighted in launching deeply personal attacks on his opponents’, revisionism of the 1979 Tory promise of more devolution, a thesis that the Westminster government didn’t waste the oil money and a grotesque claim that independence is being fought on a 1970s agenda and isn’t about the future.

It contains to my mind mistake after mistake of a kind only a dedicated Unionist and a Tory apologist could make.

I used to keep a list of those Salmond had been compared to by politicians and interviewers but I remember it contained Genghis Khan, Pol Pot, Kim Il Sun, Hitler, Mugabe and Vlad the Impaler (this one could be accurate). Recently he has undergone a witchhunt for being honest about Vladimir Putin, a man the British have tried to enlist against Scotland. Against this kind of background Torrance suggests that Salmond using terms like ‘zero credibility’ about Ed Miliband is a low blow. Mmm. He criticises the use of Eton as a slur against Cameron yet the point to me is that 19 Prime Ministers of this country went to that one school when it represents 0.001 per cent of the population. Since it is school to only the most privileged, does that tell us nothing about our country? Is the Torrance narrative that being the latest in a long line of rich public school boys in government is of no interest in a country where 96 per cent go to state schools and an overwhelming number describe themselves as working class even when they’re not?

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Slamming home the pro-Tory line is the rewriting of history – a Torrance speciality after his book on Thatcher claimed we misunderstood her – about 1979. The point about the Home intervention was that it did convince some to change their vote in the referendum – the Tories were a much more powerful force in those days and Home did offer ‘better devolution’  in return and didn’t deliver. Why are we pretending it wasn’t relevant to the outcome? And while the killer was the 40 per cent, it was in Callaghan’s grasp to stop that. Labour connived against the devolution plan and that’s why the SNP AND the Liberals voted them out. Why wouldn’t a campaign point out how the same lies were traded by the same vested interests 35 years ago? (If the SNP didn’t do it, I bet the historically-minded David would have.)

And is it not perverse to deny the importance of the catastrophic decision not to invest a rare natural asset like oil? They never mention it in the Unionist campaign, but the massive bulwark of money built up by Norway is a standing condemnation of London’s greed and myopia. The failure to use the revenues for some national project of long-term significance is a  scandal of monumental proportions – unless you’re objective is to apologise for the routine mismanagement of Britain by a corrupt and cack-handed political class.

But this column ends with the most egregious of errors in understanding – that ‘so much of the pro-independence case relies on two debating points, one 35 years and the other almost four decades old.’ No it doesn’t. I’ve never heard that historical point made at a public meeting, it is at best an add-on to more salient comments that come in to this blog and misunderstands – again – that this campaign is not the SNP but is now overwhelmingly a grassroots movement optimistically looking to taking control of our own lives and re-ordering society to suit the Scots. It is forward looking and relentlessly positive – despite the Torrance effort to paint it otherwise – and is far, far more than Alex Salmond and what the slow-witted conventional media recognise as politics. Isn’t it sad and predicable that the same shallow, personalised invective motivates the media and, as I always explain when asked about media bias, journalists write and broadcast what they know the boss wants. They know who pays the piper and he calls the tune. It is why it is such a release to say exactly as I please and be able to reach thousands without having a P45 waving in my face.

 

 

 

 

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A Poor Show

We didn’t have to wait long for my warning that Catherine Macleod in the Herald sings from the same hymnbook as Brian Wilson. Within 24 hours they both made exactly the same assertion – that Scotland already has the powers to deal with inequality and you don’t need independence to end poverty. That was quick…

First it was Catherine stating without qualification in the Herald: ‘And as we remember John Smith’s tragically premature death, we should recall that he was driven by a need to deliver social justice. The Scottish Parliament has all the levers it needs to do just that.’

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Next day in the Scotsman, Brian Wilson agrees and says the government is only talking about ending poverty and failing to bring in social justice when it has powers to do so. He urges the minister Shona Robison: ‘Please, tell us…can you point to some catalogue of actions …that have redistributed wealth from die-old rich Scots to the die-young poor, using existing powers?

Well, I googled the government site and within seconds had this list…

‘We have created the Fairer Scotland Fund for community planning partnerships. The fund is worth £435 million over three years to target investment at the root causes of poverty in Scotland. Over 2008-11 we are investing £87 million in the network of six Scottish Urban Regeneration Companies to provide the momentum necessary to bring local assets into use and stimulate economic growth. We have allocated £36 million over three years for the Wider Role Fund which supports work by Registered Social Landlords to reduce poverty and financial exclusion in the communities they serve.’

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That’s a tiny fraction of government activity which it seems counts for nothing in the world of Unionism which doesn’t think full tax powers and welfare impact on wealth…

Let’s check some inconvenient facts provided by those at the sharp end of social misery – Christine Cooper, Mike Danson and Geoff Whittam at the Poverty Alliance.

The tax system – if you didn’t know and if Catherine is still reading – is a reserved matter, that is, reserved to the British government, not the Scottish government.

They write: ‘…consistently the poorest 10 per cent have been losing a greater proportion of their incomes in tax than the average and indeed than the richest 10 per cent. We have a regressive tax system.’ That’s a British tax system. Scotland has one small component available – raising or lowering the basic rate by 3p. Everything else is done at the British Treasury (where Catherine worked so closely with Alistair).

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‘Britain is now one of the most unequal and divided countries in the OECD and is returning to levels of inequity not seen since the 1930’s. And yet the tax system exacerbates that state of unfairness in incomes with associated inequalities in health, life expectancy, well-being, education and other indicators of a cohesive and inclusive society.’

How much of this do you reckon is down to the reckless, uncaring John Swinney?

Here’s a rather politicised section from their report that neatly sums up the Unionist attitude – but missing from Wilson and Macleod’s analysis: ‘While the mantra of We’re All In This Together has metamorphosed into the Something for Nothing Culture (Lamont) and Only 12 per cent Are Net Generators of Scotland’s Wealth (Ruth Davidson), the Sunday Times Rich List recorded that the top 100 multi millionaires in the UK saw their collective wealth increase by 29.9 per cent – a whopping £77.25 billion.’

Everybody on benefits in Britain is ‘relatively much worse off than their counterparts across most of Europe’, according to the OECD.

Then, in contrast to Wilson and Macleod, they nail the Unionist lie. ‘The devolved powers at the disposal of the Scottish government and Parliament, even as amended under the Scotland Act 2012, can have but limited impacts on inequality and poverty…’

They then focus on local taxation and don’t believe the council tax is a fair system, an argument the SNP applied when they tried unsuccessfully to bring in local income tax. That was opposed by Labour, the councils, the CBI, the Federation of Small Businesses, the unions and the (British) (Labour) Treasury which said it would cut one billion pounds out of the Scottish budget if it went ahead.

Now don’t tell me any government can’t do more to combat poverty. I’ve expressed before how this is the single most important issue for me and I question just how committed the government is when so many other priorities have to be met. But who is lecturing here?

Wilson and Macleod were both at the heart of the Labour government which consistently missed its targets for eliminating poverty. Here’s the view of Peter Townsend,
Professor of international social policy at the LSE: ‘All OECD countries have substantial public social security systems. The most successful in reducing poverty rely predominantly on universal or group schemes, which are invariably more efficient and less costly to administer than means-tested benefits, including tax credits. But these schemes also contribute to social integration, link the generations and support those who cannot be expected to earn their way out of poverty.’ But that meant higher taxes and hitting the wealth creators.

So Labour make progress but not enough and then in the Westminster cycle, the Tories come in and undo it. That is why there is no definitive progress on equality in Britain and nothing but independence can change that.

But read carefully. What we are offered here from like-minded Unionists with a total commitment to the British state and thick as thieves with Alistair Darling, is a critique that there is no need for independence and, crucially, there is no need for extra powers. These are anti-devolutionists – regressives bent on undoing the advances Scotland has made and if the power of the Yes movement is defeated, it will be defenceless against them.

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Live From the Gazebo of Hate

Thank you for so many kind messages after yesterday’s blog Tough Love. It’s quite moving to hear people express their thanks and say it is what they would want to write too. We really are in a mutually supporting movement. I appreciate it.

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I see David Cameron was being supportive of Alistair Darling’s campaign leadership too. How could he not be? They are peas in a pod in this campaign and I’m sure the Prime Minister felt he was doing the diplomatic thing but this is all a world away from the real Scotland where Tory leaders heaping praise on Labour is the equivalent of handing a mop to the neighbour and saying: It’s your turn to wash the stairs.

There is already widespread dismay at the Lamont leadership. This is from last December…41% have no idea who she is, four times as many people liked Alex Salmond as liked Johann Lamont, 70% had no view on the Labour leader. Of those who said they either liked or disliked her, over 75% said they disliked her.

Among her own party supporters there is little sense of affection or loyalty. She is a head-below-parapet leader, emerging only when necessary and posted missing until dragged into the light. Her invisibility over the Falkirk constituency Unite fiasco – her party, her union – disappointed the local members, the wider union movement and Labour people looking for decisive leadership and a challenger to Salmond.

I’m even developing a sense that Iain Gray offers more than she does. Now there’s irony for you.

I haven’t heard either a Scottish Labour figure genuinely explain the strengths of Ed Miliband and why he connects with the Scottish working class and how he will serve them. Neither Ed nor Johann are rallying leaders whose very presence excites the followers and energises the movement.

My point is that Cameron coming to Scotland, as he absolutely should, does no favours to Labour whose backers recoil at the reminder of who they are in bed with and what he represents (not to mention who the backers are of the Tory Party and the Better Together campaign, sometimes the very same).

It has of course also reminded us that Cameron won’t debate with Salmond – oops – and now we know there is virtually no chance of legislation for more powers in the first Queen’s Speech if he wins the British election. Quite a result for Yes. This also plays into the theory – expressed here often – that there will be an anti-Scottish sentiment sweeping England after the next election which will make it difficult for any party to help out Scotland. If Cameron gets away with waiting a full four or five years, we will slip into oblivion again and all the complaining we can muster as Osborne’s next round of £25bn of cuts will count for nothing. ‘You had your chance,’ they say. And they’ll be right.

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I was reading my Herald yesterday in the Gazebo of Hate (see above) when I fell upon Catherine Macleod’s latest efforts to dissuade us from doing what every other nation does and claiming our self-determination. I recommend this column. As I wrote previously, if you want to know what’s going on in Alistair’s head, read Catherine. Forget the quality of writing, focus on the content and it is revealing indeed.

For at least the past 25 years, constitutional issues have skewed the political debate while there has been a desperate need for any political energy to be expended on improving the economy and public services. To change the tenor of the debate in Scotland is another good reason for voting against separation.

Now I don’t know about you but that reads to me like a criticism of the devolution years and the build-up to the parliament. The debate was skewed away from what really mattered – the economy and services – so we could all indulge ourselves with devolution, she says. I don’t recall Donald Dewar saying that. Funnily enough, since her 25 years takes us back beyond his death, neither did John Smith. In fact it wasn’t the view of any senior or ground campaign Labour folk I dealt with at the time. Whatever cynicism nationalists have about Labour and devolution, I’m in no doubt that everybody I dealt with then saw it as the issue of the age and that it would help to drive the economy and improve services, both of which were proved right.

So, who in Labour circles thinks the devolution years were wasted pondering the constitution when there were bigger fish to fry? Who could Catherine mean? Well we could start with her other Unionist campaigner friend Brian Wilson whose putrid views on devolution pervade Labour. This is possibly his most revealing diatribe http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/commentators/brian-wilson-labour-cant-win-in-britain-if-it-doesnt-win-in-scotland-887144.html

In it, he berates Labour’s decision to legislate for a parliament,  patronises Dewar and makes clear that Scotland to him is merely a platform for Labour winning at Westminster. Devolution it seems, is not a means to democratise Scotland and improve its government.

But remember too how Alistair Darling ignored calls for him to demand the release of cabinet papers from the Blair government when devolution was discussed? Over 30 files were held back from publication at the request of the Scotland Office because, it was said by a source, they were a gift to the SNP. What could they reveal that would be so contentious? Might it be Alistair arguing that there were more important issues than devolution, that it was ‘skewing’ the debate away from the economy and reform of public services, or that too much was being awarded to Scotland, that tax raising powers would reduce Westminster influence…? She knows what Alistair thinks and as she has written herself, a minister has to trust a spad… ‘absolute trust had to be at the heart of the relationship between us. I was his eyes and ears inside and outside the Treasury’… ‘An effective special adviser has to be close to the Secretary of State and crucially has to be seen to be close’….etc. There is a continuing strong relationship between them, so she opens up the idea that it isn’t just extra powers that Darling is worried about but that he believes Labour and the Union is in this pickle now because they didn’t listen to him at the time. Clearly, she implies we have to stop this obsession with Scotland’s constitution after a No vote. Does that sound to you like the basis for an improved Devo Max settlement? Let’s face it, the British state has been shaken to its core by this debate and will look for any means it can to prevent a repeat, by removing certain powers if necessary.

Catherine Macleod is peeling open the lid and I think we should all peer inside.

(Incidentally, anyone who thinks a No vote will make this go away, as she does, is living in denial. It is because the wish is never fulfilled that it remains constant. If you want people to stop bleating about powers, you vote for independence.)

On another point, the Lords committee report suggests that Scots MPs couldn’t represent the UK in negotiations, I think, rightly, as their obligation is to their constituents. I’m slightly surprised as I thought they’d say their loyalty was to Crown in Parliament or some such nonsense. But I think the message is also that they can’t be trusted to do the right thing by the British state interests if they inveigled their way into the rUK team. Bit of a slap down for the Britnat Unionist MPs, no?

But it also highlights what I mentioned a few blogs ago, that there is an element of trust required in the negotiators. I said there would be many Scots suspicious if they saw MPs, especially Labour, who had fought bitterly and with dubious assertion against independence invited on to a Scottish talks team. I absolutely believe Labour must be represented as the party is a key component of civic Scotland but it stands to reason that if you go out of your way to denigrate and belittle, that afterwards, doubts remain about your commitment to the cause you have just criticised. This was described as hateful by one John McTernan. Seems I was right, though, according to the Lords and Ladies of the Upper Chamber, whom I’ve always admired so much and feel such a natural affinity with. I think the message from the peers is: You can’t trust Scottish MPs! (But you CAN trust the unelected).

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After the global sensation of the Gazebo, I include another shocking example of the dark side of nationalism…the Wheelie Bin of Hate!

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Tough Love

Like millions of other people, (John Smith) knew that loving your country and at the same time wanting to be part of something bigger does not make you any less Scottish…

That’s right, Prime Minister, and that’s what I think about Scotland in the EU.

However, you have neatly sidestepped the one thing that defines us as a country – and every other country in the world. It’s called independence. Sovereignty. Self-determination. Home rule.

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What you haven’t explained is how a person can love their country but think it isn’t worthy of running its own affairs. If you deny your country the right to be recognized as a nation with its own government like all the others, you diminish your country, no matter how much you love it.

As your own legal advice explains, the British view of Scotland is that it was merged into greater England/Britain 300 years ago and in terms of international law, it literally does not exist. If I said that of England – that there is no England to belong to, it was taken over by Britain and has no separate legal identity of its own, would you agree? Would Conservative voters in England stand and applaud if you told them to keep English identity as a comfort blanket but accept that being an Englishman was now impossible in reality because they are all British?

There’ll always be an England – except in international law. How does that sound? What would your reaction be if Alex Salmond sallied into Oxfordshire and told your constituents they had the same status in the Union as Scots, that the parliament was moving to Edinburgh and their national budget would be set there with monetary policy based on the Scottish pound? Sorry, we’re dropping God Save the Queen but we’re sending you the words of Flower of Scotland…?

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Unimaginable, of course. But why? Because England and its champions have assumed the superior status in Union for the last three centuries and conflate the country the Union created, the United Kingdom, with their own England. The two are indissoluble, immutable, indivisible. British sovereignty IS English independence. It requires no further explanation. There is no demand for an English parliament precisely because they have one already. It’s called Westminster.

It leaves us with a problem, though, doesn’t it? We surrendered our independence in order to join together in equal partnership in a new country. We didn’t sign up to be subsumed and to be told the currency we share isn’t shared at all but belongs to the bigger partner. I don’t imagine the Commissioners, those that weren’t bribed, in 1707 thought either that mutual respect would descend through the centuries into juvenile jibes that Scots are paid for by English coin or are incapable of organising themselves to run their own affairs. I doubt if they’d believe a fifth of our children 300 years later would live miserable lives in poverty with little chance of escape or that the parliament we signed up for would so rarely reflect our national view.

What is a country without its sovereignty? When you use the word country, does it not carry the implication of independence, whatever bilateral alliances it has or membership of groupings pooling sovereignty? Of course it does. Only not in Scotland’s case where all the trappings of a country from a parliament and a government to flags and emblems define us rather than the power to run our own affairs.

The idea of joining together to share is a fine one, when you are able to do so from a position of national power – as all 28 members of the European Union do. They share, they pool but they retain their independence.

If Scotland puts the Great into Great Britain, why are we in need of your Treasury subsidies? What Great country doesn’t pay its own way? Your government has dedicated itself to proving that Scotland would be significantly worse off without your feather-bedding and your own supporters sneer that Scotland would have been bankrupted by the banking crisis so are you aware of how insincere it sounds when you praise us as if the past never happened…

And, on the same note, when did a Labour politician become one of your heroes? I do remember you lauding Margaret Thatcher but John Smith? Isn’t that another rather recent conversion? I suspect you’re working hand-in-glove with Douglas Alexander now and having your lines written for you. To be blunt, I’m not convinced that Smith resonates outside the Labour payroll the way they like to think. He had strengths for sure and debating armoury in the Commons was high among them, but I don’t think Scots warmed to him the way they did Dewar. (Perhaps that’s the next lost leader to be paraded).

Smith is your flag-bearer and another Labour man, Darling, is your spokesman. I suppose that’s the Union at work, eh? Cross-party and inclusive, working to keep the system in place that allows you to decimate public spending down to 1948 levels, allows Atos to make profits out of declaring cancer sufferers and war veterans fit for work, forces people out of their homes, caps benefits no matter the size or troubles of families, deliberately plans to make children worse off, forces people into food banks but won’t take European money to pay for them, more than doubles the number of working families in need of top-up benefits and prioritises nuclear weapons renewal… Labour and Tory hand in hand defending the indefensible. That is Great Britain. It is the unholy alliance of right wing zealots penalising working people with the self-righteous Labour Party contorting itself to regain power only to deliver more of the same. Love your country by crushing the people who make it?

I read of people in England ‘fed up with Scottish bleating’. Well, I am too. I’m sick of making the same arguments again and again and getting nowhere. Time to stop complaining and time for action.

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You hold John Smith’s hand and proclaim your love of Scotland. I’ll hold the hand of my fellow Scots and demonstrate my love of Scotland on September 18. We show our love of country by bestowing on it all the power and dignity of self-government…and then reversing the despicable policies the British state has imposed. Liberty, egality, fraternity…they all spring from sovereignty. It is the power to act that creates the freedom and equality and the care for others. We can’t wait any longer.

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