I’m Alright, Jock



I’m getting worried about what may happen if those trusted Westminster Unionist people fail to rise to the Scottish challenge. From the desperate pleas of ‘We’re listening…we’re here to help…please don’t go’, we have entered the time-honoured hall of sang-froid British arrogance – ‘you’ll get what we tell you you’ll get and it wont be until we’re ready’.

As Elaine C said: ‘Get to the back of the bus.’


I read today that far from an Iron Timetable, we’ll have to wait three years at least until something is delivered. What will it be? They haven’t decided yet because that’s their decision to make, not ours and we’ll just have to wait. There are the first round of Scotland Act changes to come in first and then there’s the General Election (the Big One that’s more important than any other and is eagerly awaited around the capitals of the known world) and, well there’s lots of bits an pieces and anti-Scottish Westminstery things to be tidied up first.

It was best articulated by the majestic heavyweight that is Ruth Davidson when she declared we can forget Devo Max, that won’t happen. Sorry, but I distinctly remember Gordon Brown’s Mighty Speech on behalf of the UK parties championing Home Rule and Federalism, terms that swayed the vote and to the cognoscenti signal Devo Max. But Ruth has ruled that out. She who has an unrivalled mandate in Scotland as leader of the decaying Tories (how they must wish they’d listened to Murdo). What does happen to intelligent people with a desire to serve when they get contaminated by the Westminster bug? Like so many before her, Davidson is now displaying mild megalomania and imagining she is a key player in British affairs. What is her constituency again? What is the strength of her party? Is she like Brown now imagining herself to have risen to imperious heights and able by right to dictate what the Scots can and can’t get?

I do hope the Proud Scots But are enjoying how the nation is being treated. But then they presumably want to live on their knees awaiting permission from a loathe-some anti-democratic elite to treat the poor in our midst with some humanity? Why must we persevere with brutal benefits cuts because London can’t understand how a nation ‘within the family’ wants to behave differently? It fits the pattern set by the plan effectively to withdraw from the ECHR which couldn’t give a clearer message – Britain is heading for pariah status as an anti-European, anti human rights backwater with draconian anti immigration rules, outwith Schengen, threatening EU withdrawal and yet lecturing the dark forces of jihadism on the importance of human respect and democracy. Just as with nuclear weapons, the message is: It’s alright for us, but not for you.

If Westminster fails this test and lets us down, I fear the reaction might not be pretty. There are limits to peoples’ reactions and if those conned into a No combine with the restless energy of the continuing Yes, polite top-down noblesse oblige politics may be turned upside down. It would be a pity but at Westminster they learn nothing and only cede that which cannot be reserved to them. The truly hopeful sign is that our political exchange is changing before our eyes and there is as yet no telling what it will bring forth.

Check out the link for my discussion with Ruth Wishart doyenne of journalists (she prefers it to veteran) and Maurice Smith.

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41 thoughts on “I’m Alright, Jock

  1. Very very unfortunately some of those involved in the Irish struggle said – the British state never gives up anything without a fight – not that I am advocating any violence.

    Even the Scotsman came out and said post indy that an independent Scotland could have made Britain more powerful in the world.

    I have no clue what their mind-set is apart from they would destroy the world if they could get richer out of it.
    We seem to be in the grip of a collective madness from those at the top

  2. “Link to Ruth Wishart ” ?

  3. Wee Ruthie received 6% of the vote.Turnout was 50.1%.therefore a mighty 3% of the elecorate voted for her.Some size of family.To the Proud Scots who voted no ,bulk buy kneepads .You may need them.

    • One person who I have used in the past, who I expected to Vote NO did so apparently for the business. Well guess what, not getting mine. I considered that this person was a Tory now I know. Welcome to what you voted for, nor will there be any recommendations for the business, which I have also done in the past. That may seem petty and was told so by a NO voter, I could not give a toss. So shall ye reap.

  4. Some No voters are beginning to realise that not only did they give up the sovereign right to manage our own affairs but also gave away the only hold we had over the Westminster establishment to improve life here in Scotland.
    The No vote was a poor decision and has left Scotland in a very bad place.
    Let’s hope enough of the No bodies waken up to this before the 2015 election and reject the Unionist parties who conned them into rejecting independence.

  5. Beckett knew all about this absurdity in the 50s. We’ve been suckered.
    -Qu’est-ce qu’on fait?
    – On attend.
    -On attend Gordo.

  6. Maybe we should just declare Independence without Westminster’s permission.If their ‘vow’ is deemed to be a load of rubbish then their power over the matter is null and void.

  7. “There are limits to peoples’ reactions and if those conned into a No combine with the restless energy of the continuing Yes, polite top-down noblesse oblige politics may be turned upside down.”

    Fine words, but, it is those “conned into a No…” that must be targeted and convinced they made a mistake and need to recant. And that won’t happen by itself.

    • People I met on Holiday who were voting YES said their Children were terrified at the thought of an Independent Scotland. God knows what kind of people we are breeding. In my day we were rebels I still am, these are what I term the complacent middle class, I hope they are now terrified of what they did vote for.

  8. What we need to do is to get some polling done on the attitudes of No voters following the vote. I hear a lot of circumstantial noise about No voters recanting but not much fact. Plus, it’s all very well to recant post the vote when it’s safe to do so, but if there was another vote tomorrow, would they just vote No again because they’re basically comfortable on their knees?

    • I thought it might be an idea to send out a leaflet asking the Voters if they were happy with their decision. I wonder if it would be a good thing for the Scottish Government to do so?

  9. The only way to ensure Scotland has a future never mind Independence is to prevent all the City of London sponsored parties do not get a single seat in Scotland. If we want a future at all without a begging bowl then we must support Scottish Parties in may 2015 and I do not mean Labour, Liberal or Tory. They have and continue to show the contempt they hold for the Scottish people.

  10. Well said Derek, thank you

  11. Well one thing is for sure, we’re not going back into the shadows again. Not this time. A three year wait is completely unacceptable and Westminster knows it – are they calling our bluff and seeing what we’ll do or are they shoving their “we-care-we-really-do” masks back in the drawer and getting on with business as usual? I suspect the latter.

    I don’t doubt for a second that Alex Salmond and Nicola Sturgeon are planning appropriate action to take, knowing full well that the SNP membership is now over 100K and the other pro-Indy parties are soaring with memberships too – these memberships are not made up of people who will quietly shut up and twiddle their fingers in the waiting room.

    All is not lost and we won’t be waiting for three years for Westminster to deign to look in our direction. I feel sure of it.

  12. lastchancetoshine

    Did the “vows” actually make a blind bit of difference? I mean really, all the vonoters, err…. no voters I know, were no voters before and don’t value extra powers anyway. I’ve not found one yet that voted no because of these promises (not looked that hard to be fair).

    The only lever left, is a credibility one which they maybe do care about a bit. Even if there were some swayed by Gordon’s vow , let’s not delude ourselves into thinking it was enough to swing it and instead work out how to persuade those who indeed voted no convinced it was the best thing to do.

    • Unfortunately,the only way to show many No voters that they have made a mistake is to show them how life is now going to be in our United Kingdom.
      No more free personal care.
      No more free prescriptions.
      No more free bus passes.
      No more “free” health service.
      Not a good decision.

      • I came back from Sweden just before the Ref & my No camper chums sneered that any hopes of a Swedish type society was fantasy. And Sweden has has no oil.

      • Sad to say that would appear to be the only answer. Hard as it is, I doubt that the Scottish government will be in a position to mitigate the affects anyway. I think that all the talk of more socialism in Scotland put many of the middle class off as well. Strangely enough I think it would have put off the Labour support as well. I have been unpleasantly surprised at some comments that I have come upon from some Labour supporters.

  13. personally im sick of the clever rhetoric, the way the tory parties conference went,basically sticking up two fingers to scotland,boris johnston saying take out a trawler chuck salmond overboard and enjoy a fine scottish kipper,in other words we can do what we like
    if the snp dont move but wait for minimal powers,then we are going to be really pissed,iv always believed that in the end britaincannot pay the interest on its loans without oil beware of boots on the ground,but if you choose comfort over freedom you dont deserve either,but the thing that really irks me ,what did the no voters achieve,or think they would achieve?

      “What did the No voters achieve, or think they would achieve?

      I can only speak about some of the people I spoke to but even five or six weeks out I was amazed / disappointed that quite a few really knew very little about the Yes Campaign and honestly were not interested – in hearing about possibilities. Due to the last six years, they wanted reassurance their pension would stay on the same terms, end of.

      OT but on that theme, I was meandering about Facebook and discovered my local community page. I read through the minutes and noted at the end , the meeting was attended by the public – all three of them!

      I was thinking, if we really want to get people to change their views , they need information and obviously not from the MSM. Stuff that is relevant to people. Perhaps keeping the town hall meetings going is the place to start, I don’t know.

      A town hall meeting about what welfare change really means , not with politicians speaking but people from Citizens advice or experts in that field. What impact and rights re fracking in your area or PFI ( which to my knowledge was never really explained to the public) the long term impact it is having , again not politicians speaking but locals who are working with this / trying to balance the books or even how the media works, with maybe even former broadcasters offering their expertise.The list is endless and now there at least 75,000 people who would turn up , perhaps able to bring someone along, although obviously not all at once.

      It would require a lot of organising but could be very beneficial for everyone in the long run ?

      • lastchancetoshine

        But as you say Bob `”and honestly were not interested”, so the problem really is that it’s all very well having public meetings but the sad reality is that these will be attended by people who ARE interested while the disinterested continue on their merry way yet still interested enough to turn out to vote without actively seeking information.

        it’s all very exasperating.

        • Aye true, but if enough informed interested people become the awkward squad, it would perhaps start to dismantle all knowing mindset that seems to possess some ( ?? ) of our Council decisions.
          I was thinking even stuff like getting your bin emptied every three weeks or why do we have road works at the height of the summer season here or even explain why permission was given for building ? Stuff that effects everyone but with the knock on effect of more understanding as to who is making the decisions and why.

          There’s a bit more clout if we’re all informed rather than the lone writer in the local rag.
          One other issue which could help is if all full Council meetings were streamed. Why do Councils proposing/ spending our budget meet behind closed doors? Then we could see quite clearly for ourselves because sad though it is, even my local paper has it’s allegiances.

          • Sigh, roadworks are done in the summer because the weather is generally better so they can proceed faster and easier. Here in Dundee they have been reconfiguring our waterfront for two years now and things have had to go slow in the winter because you cannot just chip out all the ice before laying tarmac for eg.

            This is never going to change and complaining about roadworks in the summer is like complaining about the weather.

            A local authority that did not do roadworks all summer would have people like you complaining about the state of the roads very quickly.

  14. smiling vulture

    Ruth Davidson saying she speaks for the silent majority

    These Home Rule powers are unravelling fast,I’m getting depressed about it

    • Don’t get depressed, in the failure lies our opportunity.

      • Actually Muscleguy someone like ‘me ‘ would’nt complain about the state of the roads if you are talking long term projects but you’ve kind of made my point about the need for town hall meetings. I probably would have put roadworks in the tourist season down to budgets so now I know .

      • That’s what I like to hear! And surely Westminster’s immediate “about turn” will bring the required number of No voters to their senses.

        Thanks, Derek. Good to hear people talking with reason.

  15. I keep reading how as No voters realise they were conned then theybwill rise up or join Yes. I’m sorry I don’t buy it Derek. While there may be a few who were swayed by the “vow”. Which let’s no forget Brown made. The reality is that many of the No voters. The ones I know in my area (Angus/Tayside) voted No for full on reasons. They could not be swayed from a belief that it is either stupid that we could think we could go it alone or because they are Tories, or they fear a lurch to the left and the destruction of their lifestyles. They are the middle classes. People who were forgotten about in the rush to make this ahout tye rise of the poor and working classes. Indeed many of those middle class people simply resented being asked to vote on such a ” stupid idea” by an “unsophisticated” bunch.

    Many were simply not interested and voted no returning to the Chablis and Rioja as soon as they could.

    They don’t care about NEW powers. They don’t care about Browns lies or being slagged off by politicians because, happy with their lot, believing they are doing ok, they don’t have one iota of interest in politics or the lives of others. These people simply don’t give a stuff. These are the people who voted No around here. People who look after themselves and dang anyone else who is struggling. Occassionally giving 3 quid to sponsor an African kid is about the limit of their caring. Enough to aswage their faux outrage and bury their heads in the G&T with Aperitif.

    • I live in Edinburgh and I know quite a few decent public spirited citizens who voted No. Main reasons: not wishing to depart from British solidarity. Profound distrust and dislike of Alex Salmond and lack of any awareness of the wider Yes movement or its progressive nature.

  16. We need to maintain a total strop & ignore any debate on Devo Max which means SFA in the absence of concession of any award of part of the immense oil wealth. We must unite against being dragged as part of a parish state outwith the ECHR

  17. If Westminster can’t keep their promise, why should we keep our promise to honour the results of the referendum?

  18. scottish matters (@ochayethenews)

    This is where the Common Weal will have an extraordinary ordinary role if the people make it so. The road to Indy is one that must be walked on several routes. So I joined SNP on the Indy ticket. Done. I await news of #yesalliance and tactical voting, and getting out there on canvass away days. I’d spend much of my free time knocking doors but hope that these are organised such that alliance party members are willing to engage in mass canvass efforts to lighten the load. But the no voters that we can engage are those who, in large part, will close doors quickly, reticent to engage, frightened or just too suspicious of anything that isn’t Tory, red or blue.
    But alongside the traditional routes, we need an informal union of yessers, those missing the coordination of YesScotland. I know I do. The Common Weal ideas on a community level, engaging the community are making sense. Its still rough, but that’s because its the people who will shape it. I plan to do this in tandem with the political direction, but I want to support it, so I donate a small amount monthly and I am attending the first meeting for Midlothian South later this month.
    See recent Bella Caledonia blog post, The Way Forward, by Robin McAlpine. I’d say, if we want to get to Indy, its has too much potential to ignore.

  19. http://bellacaledonia.org.uk/2014/10/01/a-way-forward/

    need to approach the problem in the manner of a project – with a plan, milestones to hit – Bella link is a start. 6 years – we all focus our attention on the goal – set in place the facilities to achieve this goal : Indy newspaper, Indy tv, factsheets on pensions, continuous town hall meetings – look at the activists we now have signed up to Indy parties!, loudly helping the less welloff ,independent bank that could become a central bank, coastal fisheries protection site/boats that could easily be turned into a scottish navy site – based at Faslane, use Unionist companies against them – eg AMEC to provide costed/planned feasibility study on removal of Trident, Business for Scotland streams weekly tax totals raised in scotland versus how much coming back from Wmnster, an analysis of how Indy scotland will deal with ageing population, actually state what the Indy scotland petroleum revenue tax will be and watch all those international oil co’s nod their heads in approval, provide people with an independent report of how Indy scotland will finance the country, etc etc . Finally, forget trying to convince the NO’s , that comes later – we build a defacto independent country as best we can and drag them off their knees and carry them with us like it or not – the bottom line is the Indy movement and the scottish govt did not have nearly enough time to prepare before the Referendum – well now we do.

    • cynical lowlander

      Some worthwhile ideas here I’d be happy to get behind.

      As a small business owner, I have made some input to the Smith Commission, we now need Bella/Wings/Newsnet to put the case in an efficient and professional manner.


    • Certainly agree with all you have said. We need to push information onto even those unwilling people, who can then not say they are uninformed. The elderly will always be a problem but speaking for myself will not be here forever, we need to keep our base secure and work on the rest.

  20. It may be the bitter pill that we are given from WM is the final insult for Scotland ,however the media mask has well and truly slipped. That itself is our victory and a result which will bear fruit with increasing numbers walking away from the msm. Ruth Davidson me thinks it might be wise to give her the exposure she craves as she is De-facto spokesperson for WM in Scotland. Democracy eh !

  21. Derek, you refer to “Proud Scots But… awaiting permission from a loathe-some anti-democratic elite to treat the poor in our midst with some humanity.” But are they though? Are they really?

    Having been constantly bombarded (and indeed brought up) with the ever-increasingly right wing state template for success – home ownership, private pensions, the individual as a self-contained unit – whilst simultaneously having the mantra of ‘the undeserving poor’ played on a loop at full volume has served to normalise self-centred behaviour among sections of the populace throughout the UK.

    Was it Labour or the Tories who coined the phrase the “squeezed middle”? They were the people who, whilst not poor, were certainly regarded as the “deserving struggling” and therefore worthy of benefits such as childcare help, etc. In that moment, the line was drawn and those who fell below it had, and have, no merit.

    Having been patted on their collective heads and told “There, there, we won’t let those nasty scroungers get their hands on your hard earned money”, is it any wonder they would wrap themselves in the comfort blanket of the status quo?

    What galvanises people who have less is the opportunity to have more, but alongside that there runs a natural desire to share the ‘more’. I think this typifies many of the Yes voters.

    So what will galvanise those who have more and are content with that? Certainly not the opportunity to have less – but perhaps the fear of having less within the UK than they would in an independent Scotland?

    It’s not a pretty campaign strategy, but it might be the only way to go – Project Fear right back at ya. Maybe it’s time for the gloves to come off?

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