An Alternative Universe

In the twilight zone inhabited by much of the media in Scotland, a universe where they would have preferred that the two years leading up to September 2014, and the two years since, never happened, the choice of Ruth Davidson as Politician of the Year, as sponsored by The Herald, fits in nicely with the natural order of things. After all they can’t keep giving it to pro-independence types, and it was never going to be ‘Kez’ this year now, was it?

The fawning write up on the political awards night in The Herald would have you believe that the aforementioned Ruth has made some sort of heroic stand against the horde of xenophobic, brave new order, righter-than right-wing Brexiteerian potential Mosleyites currently inhabiting the benches marked ‘The government’ at Westminster, her party.

You’d think she’d swooped in on the back of her winged coo with horns, or smashed her Challenger Tank through the gates at Downing Street to put them to the sword on such issues as the ‘Is it safe policy’, the one where large border guards from Britain First hold down refugee youths in a chair whilst Laurence Olivier’s ghost takes a set of dental forceps tae their gubs to check if they are under 18,

Or perhaps she deserves plaudits for the outstandingly fair, selfless and magnanimous effort she put in, following the people of the country where she ultimately wants to serve in politics voting to take the people of the country she comes from out of a union they don’t want to leave, when she joined with the rest of us to let Westminster know that the people of Scotland have a democratic right to call a second referendum in these circumstances.

Aye right! Ten minutes after the night of the long knives, when the Tories had a post Brexit vote ‘reshuffle’ (the one with the least knives in their back at the end is the winner) she was soundly behind the No referendum for Scotland, get on with the day job Nicola, Brexit means Brexit gang, and has been ever since, having established herself as a darling of the right, cringing her way through the Tory Conference, or rally,as they may soon be calling it. Ruth has got mair faces than the toon clock.

Probably more of an affront to reality, and the people of Scotland, is the choice of David Mundell as ‘Best Scot at Westminster’ for ‘steering the Scotland Bill through the Commons and helping to put together the fiscal framework that accompanies it.’ It might have been appropriate to have that award sponsored by The Trussell Trust.

This guy is only in the job of Secretary of State for Scotland because he is the only Tory, singular, that the people of Scotland elected to represent them at Westminster. That success was only achieved because the Tories flung a queens ransom at his election campaign, spending three times more than his opponents put together.

David Mundell is it. He is their only choice. If there were more of them, God forbid, he wouldnae be trusted with putting the kettle on, never mind being the mouthpiece for his party’s cruel and heartless policies in a country that doesn’t vote for them. Scarily David Mundell is Scotland’s highest ranking politician, and can’t be trusted to do anything, anything at all in Scotland’s interests.

An award for steering the Scotland Bill through the Commons? If John Swinney and his team hadn’t played hardball during the settlement negotiations Mr Mundell and his party would have robbed the country he purports to represent of 7.5 Billion pounds worth of future public service funding.

An alternative universe indeed.

Special Arrangements

Moves are to be made to protect the City of London from strife by getting it a special Brexit deal. No stone is to be left unturned in the quest to ensure the city continues to have favourable access to EU markets. Boris Johnson might even comb his hair. After all it is London, innit.

In order to negate the possibility that Brexit messes up the peace process ,or invalidates the “Good Friday Agreement”, ways are to be found to ensure that the island of Ireland doesn’t require a hard border between the north and south once the UK leaves the European Union. Yet the mere mention of self-government for Scotland invokes Project Fear images of searchlights, barbed wire fences, watchtowers and crabbit German Shepherds.

Japanese car manufacturers with plants in northern England, have had nods, winks, and noses tapped in their direction to assure them that once Brexit is implemented Westminster will do their utmost to ensure that their ability to manufacture and trade in the single market without additional tariffs, as they currently do, will not be impacted. Meanwhile projections suggest that initially 80,000 jobs are in danger in Scotland as a direct consequence of Brexit.

Due to an ageing population Scotland requires at least 25,000 immigrants per year to settle, contribute and pay taxes, just to remain economically stable, not to grow, just to stand still. 62% of Scottish voters voted to remain in the European Union which allows freedom of movement for European citizens to do just that. Hard Brexit, imposed undemocratically by Westminster, will drastically impact this, and is not at all in Scotland’s interests. No deal, no special arrangement.

The proportion of over 75’s in Scotland is expected to rise by 80% in the next 20 years, The less people paying taxes, the less money there is for public services, and to pay for the increased level of aged care services which will be required.

A clear example of how much Westminster and the British establishment really value their ‘partner’. Better Together?

The Brexit Plan

The Cabinet Room, 10 Downing Street, yesterday, early afternoon. The First Ministers of Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland having left the building.

Theresa May : (Slightly whispering) “Has she definitely gone?”

David Mundell: (Furtively peeping through the curtains)” No Ma’am. She’s still out there talking to the press!’

Theresa May: “Open the window a bit Denis. You are Scotch, aren’t you? See if you can understand what she’s saying to them.”

David Mundell: (Bowing) “Yes Prime Minister” (Gently, and quietly, lifting the window, trying not to draw the attention of the media pack outside, so that the window is slightly ajar).

Theresa May: “So what’s going on Denis, can you hear her?”

David Mundell: “Sorry Ma’am, I’m still called David. (Lifting lughole from window ledge) The press hack from the Sun has just asked her where she gets her shoes.”

Theresa May; “Never mind all of that. What is she saying?’

David Mundell: “ She’s telling them that our meeting has left her feeling frustrated. She says she hasn’t learnt anything new today. She’s saying that the meeting involved robust discussion. Oh well done Prime Minister (gushing) you were so firm with her.”

Theresa May : “ What else is she saying Denis, what else?”

David Mundell; (Voice turning panicky) “She’s on to us! She’s telling them we don’t have a plan for Brexit! Someone just asked her if she felt as if she was undermining our Brexit negotiations, and she answered by saying ‘that you can’t undermine something that doesn’t exist!’ She says that you promised her months ago that we would only invoke Article 50 once an accommodation had been reached between all UK partners on a common approach. Oh my goodness, what are we going to do?…. She’s got friends in Europe, and she’s consulting the masses on plans for a referendum on independence again….We’re doooooomed……”

Theresa May: ‘Calm down Denis. David, you are the Minister for Brexit. How is the Brexit plan coming along? Are we using our tried and tested techniques?”

David Davis: “ Of course Prime Minister. We’re following our usual plan as always. However things are not going too well. We’ve been trying to find something we can threaten the other EU members with for months, with no success. We then tried to determine who we can buy orf, and that doesn’t seem to be working either. Those blooming Johnny Foreigners seem to be sticking together on this one.”

Theresa May: “Keep trying. Meanwhile we stick firmly to the line that Brexit means Brexit for the UK as a whole. Hard, soft, squidgy or crunchy. We all leave together to begin our glorious renaissance. Rule Britannia ……until we can figure out what we are going to do next.

The public is going to cotton on shortly too that we’re clueless, so we’d better organise another pageant of some sort to divert their attention. Ring Buck House and ask if there’s another baby in the offing. No, better still. Has the younger one got a girlfriend? No? Get him one, and get a wedding organised. That’ll fill the papers for a while. Someone get me Nicholas Witchell. Also, get on the phone to China, and firm up that provisional order for the new Royal Yacht. We are going to need that soon. Yes, take the money from the NHS budget. They won’t notice, and we can run a competition in the Express to name it.

Is she still there Denis? “

David Mundell: “Oh Yes Prime Minister. She has the press pack’s full attention now. She’s still talking, and has just said something about fully protecting Scotland’s interests and addressing the ‘democratic deficit’. What’s a democratic deficit?”

No Mandate

Shut up Scotland. Shut up. Be quiet. You are babbling amongst yourselves again in that nonsensical guttural slang that you grunt at each other in. You are a loathsome minority. It’s oh so tiresome. Your parochialism is dull and boring.

Listen to your countrymen and women. They’re alright Jack. Strong Proud Scots. They’ve got it right. They admire our long held common history. Strength and security. Oh look, how cute! Pippa Middleton’s poodle in a kilt!

How could you possibly survive? The clearances were inevitable. Shipbuilding got to be cheaper elsewhere. Here, have a contract for navy frigates………only joking!

Ravenscraig needed to be demolished. You always wanted to work as a casual shelf-stacker in a supermarket, didn’t you?

Did we tell you that our oil, which you store for us, is running out tomorrow, and then again the next day, or is it the day after that?…… Mug punters.

You have no mandate because we tell you you have no mandate. It’s as simple as that. We decide, you don’t. It’s our type of democracy, not yours.

56 out of 59 MPs at Westminster? So what. They are powerless. Can’t you count? Oh, and did we mention we were reducing the number of constituencies soon? That will hurt you more than it will hurt us.

You live in a region of us, a region we have exploited for centuries, and to an extreme for the last 50 years. But you are too collectively weak and divided to recognise that.

Such a strong devolved government we allowed you, control of almost 15% of your own destiny, and the powers only to tie yourselves in knots, and make yourselves unpopular.

Our beneficence knows no bounds. You saw that we gave in when you spotted that we were trying to relieve you of 7 billion pounds as part of the settlement. How nice of us.

We tell you we love you, and you believe it. We tell you we would be heartbroken if you decided to leave our patronising embrace. In truth we would be nothing without you, and the gifts we unburden you of.

We’ll just keep laughing at you, marginalising you. To mock you we’ll keep printing pictures of your ridiculously atavistic blue-painted faces. Coochycoo Bravehearties. A pathetic lot.

Your own perspective on news and current affairs? Why would you need that? Does Cheshire get to have a perspective on world events? No. Then why should you? London knows best… shhhhh.

A mandate to have another squabble amongst yourselves about leaving us, where we’d only end up again having to frighten those who might initially lose a quid? You are having a laugh. Shut up Jock. Our patience with your insolence is wearing thin.

Instead, come with us to experience an exciting renaissance, the return of our empire. This Sceptred Isle can be great once more, in pounds and ounces. Come with us to Brexitopia.

Clueless

There will be others who will do a better, more erudite and forensic analysis of Nick Cohen’s bizarre blog for The Spectator yesterday suggesting that the SNP are censoring the Scottish media, but his views certainly require comment.

Does this bloke know that in Scotland only one newspaper provides balanced reporting which takes account of the political views of about half of the population? Does he seriously contend that whichever of the unionist journos who hides behind the pseudonym of ‘Spanner’ to produce the vile hatred that comes out of his social media posts is a good guy because logically he must be, otherwise J K Rowling wouldn’t like him. Really?

Is he aware that the broadcasting media in Scotland is that joined at the hip to big brother and fecked up that it can’t even ring fence contracts for the national team’s vital football matches to terrestrial TV (shite as they may be) so that Scots can actually watch their own country playing sport other than the England matches that are on their TV’s at the same time?

Does he realise how completely mental his assertions that the SNP somehow control STV, frighten the National Union of Journalists, and bully the BBC, sound to people who actually experience the printed and broadcasting media in Scotland? People who have spent years being patronised and having their views ignored, unless those views comply with unionism.

All we want is balance. Even last night we saw the latest example of any possibility of Scotland achieving a modicum of control over its own BBC content being laughed out of Westminster, where it was made clear, during a debate on the subject, that the BBC represents the views “of the nation” full stop. Their nation. Shut up Scotland. Eat your cereal.

I suggest Nick Cohen is talking through a hole in his posterior, and perhaps should stick to commenting on subjects where he isn’t clearly clueless.

Yes Please

What a difference two years makes. The massive traffic jam heading at a snail’s pace down the A74 (M) led at the front by Nick Robinson, the journalist prone to not being able to hear comprehensive answers to questions he asks of Scottish senior politicians, sitting atop a removal van full of the RBS’s safe deposit boxes waving a union flag, and the Loch Ness Monster at the back, has come to a loud screeching halt somewhere around Ecclefechan, and turned around. The jam has now increased ten-fold heading the other way as financial institutions, international businesses, EU citizens with their valuable skills and professions, and Remain voters, prepare to seek refuge from Brexitastrophe Britain.

The pound, or as it’s currently known 68p, is plummeting faster than David Mundell’s credibility, we’re four months further along the line with not much more known about “hard Brexit’ other than it might involve a lot of ‘Land of Hope and Glory’ last night of the proms type flag waving, there’s a possibility that the Tories are building a big shiny expensive boat for a tiny percentage of the super-rich to play in, and foreigners aren’t welcome, unless they are coming to sign big trading contracts, because they will you know, Boris says so! He might want to have a word with Donald Tusk to get the real picture.

Meanwhile be prepared for Project Fear to move to Defcon 1 over the next couple of weeks. It’s never really went away since well before September 2014, but it’s about to wind itself up into a furious frenzy now that the Scottish Government have announced the publication of a draft bill for a second independence referendum for consultation. Remember too that last time the British establishment were entirely sure that they were going to win the referendum right up until the last few days when they had to pull all sorts of rabbits out of the false promises hat to save their necks. This time the pressure will be on them. Their backs are against the wall, and they are capable of, and will do, anything to protect their power. They will be far more formidable then they were in 2014.

There is no official No Campaign as yet, although campaign funding is well underway. As Robin McAlpine said “ you don’t need a No Campaign to have a Yes Campaign.” I think it’s time for us to get moving.

Bring on the Twitterbots

The Cabinet Room, 10 Downing Street. A thin pale woman, with the look of an undertaker, sits hunched over some paperwork at a long polished oak table, underneath a portrait of Baroness Margaret Thatcher.

A frocked coated underling appears, interrupting the silence.

“I’m sorry to disturb you Prime Minister, but I have the Secretary of State for Scotland outside asking to see you, and frankly he seems agitated.”

Theresa May: “Show him in…”

David Mundell: (Bowing at the waist) ” Prime Minister, it’s so good of you to see me at short notice. I’m so worried……No, No, No……” (Shaking his head from side to side and sweating profusely).

Theresa May: “Stop rambling Denis, and get to the point. I’m a busy woman. Out with it!”

David Mundell: “Apologies Ma’am (bowing again) but it’s actually still David. The thing is…. well…. They are on to us…. The game is up.”

Theresa May: “How can they possibly be on to us Denis? We’ve taken the greatest of care, both sides of the House,with no expense (of Scotland’s) spared to keep them like mushrooms for generations. Are you telling me that has changed?”

David Mundell: “Those Nats have had a conference, They’ve decided they are going to draft up a new divorce proposal if we don’t let them stay in Europe. After all we’ve done for them, evil swines. But they are a garrulous bunch, and somehow,….somehow the word has gotten out.”

Theresa May: “Don’t worry, our methods are tried and tested Denis. We’ve had spin doctors for years hitting home the message to them that they have a huge deficit, even during the times they didn’t, that our oil, that they store around their shores for us, is a curse, and running out next year, every year, that their puny little province is a financial basket case, that they can’t have the pound, and, as they are so teensy weensy, they need our benevolence to survive, and be cosy and safe.

Their poverty rates are appalling. It’s been easy to convince them that they are somewhat insignificant. It always works….Are you really telling me we have a problem?”

David Mundell ” Yes Ma’am, (genuflecting) some of them have worked out that all of these problems that we tell them that they have have one common denominator., and I’m sure they’ll tell the others. It’s going to spread quicker than a backstabbing at a cabinet meeting,”

Theresa May “And what is that my dear chap?”

David Mundell: “All of them have happened whilst under the control of Westminster.”

Theresa May (Lifting phone and speaking into it with urgency) “Get me Amber Rudd, Karen Bradley, the Secretary of Kultcha, the editors of the Daily Mail, Express, Telegraph, The Scotsman, the Herald, The Sun, and that one with the Vow, I can’t remember what it’s called.

Deploy the Twitterbots that we bought from that nice chapTrump. Then get me the Director General of the British Broadcasting Corporation, the chap from Sky who works for Uncle Rupert, and Andrew……. What? …….either one will do, Marr or Neil… Oh and contact Lord Darling, yes the one with the eyebrows. We’re going to need him as a consultant.

I want them all here right now…… We’re launching Operation Snake-oil 2….”