Are You Sitting Comfortably?


By Derek Bateman

Are you panicking? Getting desperate yet? There seems to be a line from the No fantasists that it’s in the bag and the whole of Yes is frantically searching for a game-changer. Or is that itself just an example of desperation from a campaign which is hated by its own people and which has brought British politics lower than ever before?

Personally I have no sense of urgency or anxiety about what is happening. I haven’t a moment’s doubt that Scotland is being won over every time some basic facts are presented and I don’t think that is going to change after September.

If it doesn’t all come together by the 18th to win over enough Scots to Yes, so be it. The long process is under way and it will come eventually. I am content that we have exposed the threadbare, shrill, self-serving bilge of British nationalist Blighty and it’s stop-at-nothing manipulation of the truth.

For many thousands of us, there is no going back. The discontent that has worried away for decades and helped deliver devolution has grown arms and legs and is an unpredictable monster demanding to be fed. No more will we smile benignly at sleekit promises from the Jim Murphys, Margaret Currans and Johann Lamonts in the belief that, whatever their shortcomings, their heart was in the right place. We now know that isn’t true.

Their heart lies in London with financiers, landowners and mercenaries where they work hand-in-glove with Tories, UKIP and the BNP to thwart the advance of social justice in Scotland. They prefer Tories in Westminster to Labour in Scotland.

This unveiling of the reality of Labour’s motives will continue after any No vote. The entire onus will switch to Labour. Their Tory pals will disappear – as will Darling. Labour will be left with the rotting corpse of a system they championed, their own arguments devouring them as the cuts bite, Westminster fails to deliver and the SNP carries on in government.

There is no stopping us now. Plans are already being laid for the post-referendum Scotland, win or lose. And they don’t include a lasting reverence to payroll politicians and malleable journalists whose malign grip has held back the kind of reforms and public information that can change lives.

I have been away from our beloved media for most of the last month, only dipping in occasionally. It has made me a happier person. So much of the stuff produced by the conventional outlets has the hand of corporate process on it, of boardroom and marketing, projecting sectoral interests without question.

Interesting, isn’t it to remember that in that space we would normally expect to find the CBI, once the enthroned leader of Big Business, now, through scrutiny and exposure, nothing more than a ghost at the banquet. That’s the impact of rigorous examination, strict and fair rules and the cleansing effect of public ridicule. We need more of it.

But one or two items did pique my interest, or at least my astonishment. One of the most breathtaking was Ruth Davidson’s so called essay in, I think, the Herald in which she contradicted everything we know to have been happening since 2011. In her world – if we believe she actually thinks this – our national debate has merely kept us from addressing the real issues of the day like the economy, jobs, welfare and health.

This is the constitution as distraction. It betrays the mindset of the hopelessly backward Unionist in which the constitutional settlement is cast in iron and can only be mildly reworked internally. Its existence is an absolute. Without it there is no life, no truth, no reality. They are disciples, real believers…in Monarchy, Military, Elites and Social suppression.

People are graded according to social worth and we know who the deserving are – the current government couldn’t make it clearer – low income families are expendable, their quality of life a variable while bankers are worth protecting by law if necessary and at the cost of international prestige.

Davidson, if we really do think an intelligent woman believes this bilge, drops national independence into a box marked Constitutional Mumbo Jumbo. She then picks Economy out of another box and ponders it in isolation. This is Jackanory politics.

The whole point of the Yes movement is to use the constitution as a means to take control of the power to direct policies towards a different Scotland. It is only through the accretion of all powers that we can mould policies that suit our national need and so change our society.

If you’re content that multi national bosses and wholesale tax dodgers should work with public school spivs in an antiquated parliament with 800 of the Undead to run your country, vote No.

Far from distracting Scots, the referendum has been the greatest awakening of political thought in our lifetime, linking votes to poverty and early death, weapons of mass destruction to early intervention to talentless politicians. We KNOW. We know like we’ve never known before…how the country works, who the crooks are, who we can trust and who we can’t.

We know how the media works, even the BBC. We know we are misled and mis-sold ideas. We know they are shameless and mendacious. We know we want rid of them and this is our chance.

We used to be told that we can’t change anything. If we vote nothing changes. That isn’t true in Scotland any more. Our votes delivered the SNP, the best government Scotland has ever had. It brought us a government with a social conscience, universal benefits, anti-austerity measures and, for the first time, real vision for Scotland. Nobody else and no system but independence can do that.

Devolution can only inch you forward slowly when we are ready to make a transformative leap. And after a No vote, the real strength of Scotland’s case will dissolve completely – London has only delivered some powers because it is terrified of the underlying threat of independence. By showing our own fear of our future, we remove their fear of us. Once that has gone, we are at their mercy.

That’s a payday for Davidson, Ian Taylor, the No-donating boss of tax-dodging Vitol, for Jim Murphy and his nukes and for Salmond-fearing Cameron and his elitist chums.

That realisation is raging through Scotland and it’s a fire that won’t be contained.

Courtesy of Derek Bateman