Stand together

Scotland is a country which in 2014 was described by an OECD report as being the 14th richest country in the world, ahead of the UK as a whole, which ranked 18th, if it were to become once again an independent state. (Yes,I know,oil prices do fluctuate, up as well as down).

Yet in 2015/16 more than a quarter of Scotland’s children were living in poverty, a rise of 4% on the previous year. 70% of these children live in homes where somebody is in employment.

In the same period in total 1.05 million Scots were living in relative poverty, after housing costs, up 2% on the previous year.

In 2016/17 the numbers of emergency Foodbank supplies provided in Scotland hit a record high at more than 145,000, marking a 9% increase on the previous year. The Trussell Trust has 52 Foodbanks in Scotland, 52! Around 48,000 of the three day emergency food supplies were to feed hungry Scottish children.

The cumulative supply of emergency food provided to Scots for that period is the equivalent of enough to feed the residents of the city of Dundee for three days, according to the charity’s spokesperson in Scotland.

In Glasgow, our biggest population centre, it is estimated that around 34% of children live in poverty. Life expectancy in some areas of the city is around the lowest in the whole of the current United Kingdom. Almost half of Glasgow’s residents,47.3%, reside in 20% of the most deprived areas in Scotland.

In 2015 706 people died in Scotland as a result of drug abuse. The highest recorded level at that time, 68% more than ten years previously.

Folks, the rifts, disputes and squabbling need to be put behind us, differences of opinion respected and put to one side. Scotland is in a period of ever increasing planned decline brought about by a distant government whose only interests in Scots and Scotland are financial and self serving. We are a convenient resource-rich province to be looted systematically to maintain power and influence for a wealthy minority.

If we are ever to grow a movement capable of doing something about all of this we broadly need to stand together, not in factions. Let’s focus on those that really are doing us harm.

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What a formidable strength we have

What a formidable strength we have. What great potential. What an opportunity to grow a movement which, if we work positively together, will inevitably tip the balance decisively in the direction of self-determination for Scotland.

Those who passionately believe in Scotland returning to its rightful state of independence have come to this conclusion from many directions, and have many varied reasons for having this view. Those reasons are worthy of respect and consideration. Nobody with an interest in Scotland’s future being free of the rule of its larger neighbour has a monopoly on Independence. Everybody committed to this aim has an opinion, and unless those opinions are extreme, in the form of racism, hate or divisiveness, they are entitled to be heard, and not belittled or marginalised. We should leave that sort of nonsense to those that would gleefully see us fail. We are better than that.

When the time comes, when some structure starts to be put in place, when the upcoming conversations between First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and the group of Indy stakeholders under the umbrella of the Scottish Independence Convention, and others, have taken place, when we start to see a figurehead emerge who will be tasked with the responsibility of putting some of our great independence-minded strategists and organisers to work, so that they can formulate processes for clear communication, training, information sharing and rebuttal strategies, to energise and get the best use out of us, the passionate many, when we start to hear the juggernaut rolling again building towards a rumbling sound they will eventually hear very loudly around Westminster, we will all be in this together, focused on one aim.

It can be a wee bit disheartening watching internal factions having a moan at each other. The Cat Boyd thing went on, and on, and on, almost as long as the debate about the TV audience planted foodbank nurse who apparently likes fine dining. I’m not defending Cat Boyd, and I’m not criticising her, and yes, in Scotland voting for anyone else at the moment other than the SNP is a vote for unionism, but we need to remember that we need to appeal, and bring along, a wide cross section of Scottish society with us if we are to achieve our goal. Take into account too that Cat Boyd has worked her socks off for the Indy movement for a number of years now.

I read a couple of comments the other day that suggested that The National was in fact a unionist paper in disguise. A few years ago we were unhappy that we had no voice in the media. In order to try and address this issue those that created The National, the likes of Richard Walker, established this paper against the odds, in an age that is seeing the decline of profitable print media, a new newspaper supporting the Independence view, working on a shoestring budget. They represent us. They are part of the process of rebutting the British nationalist propaganda nonsense that comes at us in constant waves, and importantly are a symbol of normalising independence as a proposition for others in Scotland who currently don’t see it our way. The National is certainly not a unionist paper in disguise.

As a very minor, but regular, blogger on all things Indy, generally trying to keep things light-hearted and supportive, where the topic allows, inspired by the likes of the excellent Paul Kavanagh, I’m used to fairly regularly attracting abuse from unionist online fundamentalists, which is water off a ducks back. I sadly learned too late, after the independence referendum in 2014, that spending hours being manoeuvred into online one-upmanship with Better Togetherites really was pretty pointless and did absolutely nothing to help convince my fellow Scots that Yes was the answer. A waste of energy. A real learning exercise.

I took pelters recently, not from unionists, which suggested I was not a supporter of an independent Scotland, and that I was criticising the SNP in one of my blogs, neither of which happens to be true. In fact I would defy anyone to go through the 300 or so pieces I’ve written since this blog started and find a criticism of Nicola Sturgeon, or the SNP, or the Scottish Government. I certainly reserve the right to do so If I feel they deserve it, but otherwise my targets will always be those with power or influence that oppose the right of the people of Scotland to have a government made up of their peers.

Our strength is our enthusiasm. our passion and our tenacity to get the job done, despite all of the massive advantages and established British state mechanisms and media powers lined up against us. We’ve had some highs and lows since the summer of 2014 but these are the qualities that will ensure we will win this, together. We’re a broad movement that will grow, we are champing at the bit to get started again, and there are exciting times to come as we anticipate an organisation being put in place to help us fulfil our dream. Let’s focus on the positives, then the negatives can take care of themselves.

‘Another Scotland is possible’

With the welcome news, much to the howling and wailing of our unionist opponents, that Nicola Sturgeon is set to sit down with the folk at the Scottish Independence Convention,and others, in the next couple of weeks, to talk about moving forward the case for independence in the current political climate, a wee change of pace for the itisintruthnotforglory blog today.

We all individually have our views and our own personal vision of how we see Scotland’s future. Mine’s is about establishing and growing an outgoing social democratic republic, which first and foremost places the welfare of it’s people, all of them, as a priority, not a country tied to past glories, self-serving greed or exceptionalism. We are as good as everybody else, not better than them.

This clip of David Hayman reading the Radical Independence Declaration in 2013 sums up my view and reaffirms my commitment every time I watch it.

‘Another Scotland is possible.’

Parallel worlds

I know, I know, we all know what to expect from any Hootsmon article about politics in Scotland, but I just had to read it. When I saw the title of Brian Monteith’s piece the other day entitled ‘Nationalism has become greatest enemy of devolution’ I couldn’t stop myself. We’ve all done it.

Having read the assertions of the self-confessed ‘diehard unionist’ I can only conclude that yes, indeed, there is a parallel universe, and yes, there are a number of people living in a very small, so small that you can hardly see it on a weather map, insignificant, reverent region of a mighty parallel glorious world leader country, and that small worthless region is called North Britain.

Monteith suggests that devolution is in danger. This danger comes 20 years after Donald Dewar, a fine man apart from his decision to accede to Westminster pressure to redraw Scotland’s sea boundaries prior to devolution, who was Secretary of State for Scotland at the time, a time when a Secretary of State for Scotland actually had things to do other than spend huge sums of taxpayers money producing British nationalist propaganda to be fed constantly to the people of Scotland, and licking the expensive shoes of London’s Prime Minister, published the White Paper which set the wheels in motion for a referendum resulting in devolution.

This ‘serious attack’ Monteith asserts comes not from unionism but from the current Scottish Government, who he feels are either deliberately sabotaging Scotland’s devolved powers arrangement to strengthen their case for grievance, or because they have simply mismanaged their powers and are incompetent.

In Monteith’s North Britain, you see, we should all be deferential to the broad shouldered mother state that nurtures and watches over us with benevolence. In his world there is no Scotland as a country with a larger neighboring country ruling over it ,using its people, land and resources to further its own aims, under the guise of a partnership. No, in his world the Scottish Government, and by association those who support them, are being disrespectful, and biting the hand that feeds them.

Use the powers that our leaders have kindly given you to make the lives of Scots better, instead of complaining, is Brian’s view. Monteith suggests that from a unionist point of view when devolution was granted those with the same view as him did not complain or further oppose Scotland gaining it’s limited powers devolved status, no, they accepted it, and committed themselves to making it work. Unionist politicians , he writes, made proposals to improve devolution, proposals which have been accepted that make the Holyrood parliament more accountable. Curiously though he doesn’t mention at any point why it is that several of them have publicly stated since then that they do not recognise the authority of the parliament of Scotland, or the sovereignty of its people. The money is no’ bad though.

Clearly Mr Monteith was off work with a wee sniffle on the days when the Scottish government implemented it’s many beneficial changes for the people of Scotland to move it away from what the UK government consider to be social democracy. Free tertiary education, free prescriptions, free personal care for the aged, enhanced child care access, are just a few we could name . The soon to be introduced new social security system for Scotland based on dignity and respect, not stigmatism and resentment, will be a further use of the powers that our masters have deigned to honour us with.

Yes the Scottish government can tinker around the edges, and they are, of tax and revenue systems within the boundaries that they can , but if they are denied the financial levers and information to make significant changes it would be a fool’s errand to do otherwise. How can a devolved government make meaningful strategic financial decisions, or take steps designed to grow the economy, without knowing how much VAT is collected in Scotland, how much Income Tax is collected in Scotland, how much National Insurance contributions are made in Scotland, how much Corporation Tax is collected?

Monteith cites the recent “unnamed source’ leak about the status of the position of First Minister of Scotland being downgraded, in terms of access to Theresa May, as an example of how the SNP government has brought devolution into disrepute, and how their actions have resulted in the authority of Holyrood becoming diminished. The seeds were sown, he reckons, way back when the newly elected Prime Minister, after hosing down Gove and Boris, kindly visited Edinburgh as one of her first acts as Premier, only to suffer the ‘public ridicule’ of having her phoaites taken in front of two saltires instead of one saltire and a union flag. Wait a minute, is it not supposed to be us that are obsessed with flags? He suggests that this was a cheap shot. I would suggest that more of a cheap shot is his assertion, following the various terrorist incidents that took place recently in England, that the SNP Scottish government was not respectful or keen to show a mark of support for the victims because Scotland didn’t project large Union flags onto public buildings, like some other European countries did. That one is below the belt Brian, it really is.

The article then degenerates into comic farce where Monteith basically accuses the First Minister of an over-inflated sense of her own importance, and makes a case that if she had played nice, in the face of a robotic intransigent Prime Minister and a sycophantic Scottish Secretary, she could, by this stage, have been front and centre with the Westminster Ant Hill mob influencing the negotiations, having vital input on fishing, farming and other EU powers coming back as part of the UK’s xenophobic divorce.

What nonsense. I’m not going to list every instance here, but we all know that from day one, from the day and hour the whole Brexit decision was reached, and initially, and commendably, her instinctive act was to try and reassure EU citizens resident in Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon has bent over backwards, forwards and sideways, like a Red Bull fueled break dancer playing Twister, to be reasonable and respectful to the UK government’s position, but you can only be ignored and belittled for so long in these situations. 62% of Scotland’s electorate voted to remain Europeans.

There are indeed two Scotlands, and in the view of those who live in one of them,it isn’t a country at all.

It really is time for that to change.

False hope

Is it a bird, is it a plane? No, it’s just Jeremy Corbyn.

Boosted by losing a General Election in significantly a more narrower manner than expected due to the sheer incompetence and monotony of the incumbent government of England, and all of the surrounding countries England still rules, Corbyn is being hailed as some form of socialist saviour, sent to heal the contrite, To bring the party back home.

Following a three year period where the former back bencher couldn’t lie down straight in bed without having to pull a couple of parliamentary canteen knives out from between his shoulder blades, we now find former New Labourites prostrating themselves on cold stone floors at his feet, dressed in sack cloth and ashes, flagellating each other with satchels of receipts and expenses claims for second homes, gardeners, and all of the best restaurants in the south east, whilst inhaling the sweet poisonous incense coming from a pyre of burning books, copies of Blair’s self-indulgent autobiography “A journey”. ‘ Save us Jezza, save us, we didn’t want to be neo-Liberals, we didn’t want cushy careers in politics with loads of perks and a seat in the House of Lords, we wanted to carry on singing the Red Flag,’ they chant in their repentant agony.

I’ve got news for them. Don’t even dare to suggest that suddenly your New/Old/Mixed Doubles Labour Party is all about Keir Hardie, Nye Bevan and Clem Attlee, social contracts and to hell with the bosses, again, because Corbyn certainly isn’t on the same plain as these distinguished principled leaders who were determined to use every fibre of their being to improve the lot of ordinary working people.

Corbyn doesn’t even talk the talk. It is clear that any real socialist thinking that he has is being shunted away to the one side, when necessary, in the pursuit of power, in order to appeal to the wider swing voters of the south. Take, for example, his weekend pronouncements on the Marr show. Any Labour leader who can possibly say that immigration from the EU has destroyed the conditions of workers in the UK should be ashamed of himself. Decades of under-regulated free market greed under both the Tories and his party might just have had a wee bit to do with that perhaps. He’s scapegoating, on the bandwagon, and a real Labour man wouldn’t blame immigrants for problems caused by the selfishness of others.

He’s got a serious issue with the EU, that is clear, but his statement that he wants the UK to achieve a tariff free arrangement with the European Union once the divorce goes through sounds like a parrot fashion Tory response , and shows a clear lack of personal courage on his part, in fear of harming any chance he might have of government when the Brexit catastrophe happens. If he is his own man he should come right out and admit that unless the UK accepts that it should comply with the fundamental four freedoms of the EU, which includes the continued free movement to live and work of EU citizens, then the chances of a tariff free arrangement happening are nil, the middle of a doughnut, zero.

How many times do the EU have to tell British politicians this? Should they perhaps hire an aeroplane with a sign attached to its tail saying “No free movement, no deal” to buzz around Whitehall for the next eighteen months? Arrogance and ignorance are a dangerous combination.

There are many of us sick to the back teeth of hearing his stock standard answer on his thoughts on self-government for Scotland “ it would lead to turbo-charged austerity”. No thought, no context, no explanation, just a soundbite, over and over again, in many forums. During the last year he’s said it almost as often as Theresa May has mentioned ‘strength’ and ‘stability’.

A real Labour leader, with a backbone, would have looked at the results of the Brexit vote, where 62% of Scots voted to remain in the EU, and being committed to democracy, backed calls for Scotland to be involved in the negotiations, or support the proposition that Scotland should be able to seek their own arrangements with the EU, or be able to carry out a further referendum on self-government based on a material change to circumstances as they existed in 2014.

No, he just follows the union at all costs mantra. To do anything else might harm his chances of power, a personal strategy which has also resulted in his now watered down views on weapons of mass murder, the storage of which paints a huge target over the Central Belt of Scotland, the most densely populated area of the country.

Don’t let Corbyn fool you. He may have been considered the last of a dying breed in the Labour Party, but he’s just another career minded politician willing to sell his soul to the devil for power.

Let them get on with it. Scotland will be so much better off in so many ways when it returns to its rightful independent state.

Banging the drum

A politician most definitely pushing herself forward for stardom. Known for flip-flopping, sometimes spectacularly, on any given subject to suit whatever her personal career agenda happens to be at the time, she is now fishing for a centre line, like a 21st century answer to Tony ‘The Hague’ Blair.

The British State broadcaster reported yesterday that Field Marshall Ruthie Queen of Scots Davison, in an article for an allegedly centre right online site, has warned her supreme leaders that they must get the finger oot and show greater leadership if they want to survive.

Preparing herself for her one woman show in Edinburgh for the festival month of August, Unlike Alex Salmond not in the festival itself, but at the Tattoo, where nightly as a finale to the spectacular martial event she will march up and down the castle esplanade alone under a roving spotlight wearing her Colonel’s uniform proudly to the resounding chorus of “The British Grenadiers” coming from the band of the Royal Marines accompanied by the clapping of a couple of thousand North American tourists, who all might be distantly related to Rob Roy McGregor, Ruthie implores her divine leaders to be “bold” in making the case for selfish greed.

Ruthie feels that people are losing faith in capitalism amid rising anger over social injustice. Well said Ruth. You are indeed worthy of iconic worship by vast numbers of voters, but putting that another way what you are actually saying is that your party leaders need to get a bit smarter in applying the snake oil as more people are starting to cotton on. A new generation of voters are cottoning on to that great British tradition, blatant exploitation, which redistributes the wealth of many to only a small number of notable worthies (decided by themselves) worthies who can handle the dire responsibilities of extreme wealth, those with the prerequisite personal quality of not having a conscience. Smarten up Theresa, says Ruthie, they are on to us!

The recently anointed, by the BBC, Scottish Head of State also suggests that instability is a bad thing. Zero hours contracts, the feeling that the last time you had a pay rise was the year that St Johnstone won the cup, and sleeping in your Mam and Dads’ living room when you are 28 because you can’t afford to pay rent anywhere, are all apparently signs of a system that really disnae work for Britain’s young adults. and she implores the band of bumbling public school educated society identities and millionaires who run the party she represents to start making the case for personal greed using twice as much effort as they currently are.

An unnamed senior Scottish Tory source (there seem to be a lot more unnamed sources than usual floating about at the moment) told the Times that Ruth is “appalled at the defensive crouch” that the UK government has gotten into. Would that be the crouch that David Davis goes into every time an EU representative says good morning to him, or perhaps the defensive crouch the soon to be yodeling mountain goat frightener, Theresa May, takes at the very mention of the words Nicola Sturgeon?

I would definitely take issue with Davidson’s concluding comments though, when she says that the Tories should “stop fighting among themselves and start banging the drum for Conservatism because if we don’t, we lose”. I think we are all pretty clear that since they lost their majority at the last General Election they have worked pretty hard at banging the drum, by bribing a political party with the values, prejudices and narrowmindedness of the 19th century to keep them in power. That drum is well and truly being banged.

Destined for big things is Ruthie, and further afield than Holyrood.

And then we will win

I don’t usually reblog other Indy bloggers articles but Paul’s comments here highlight how crucial it is, if we are to ever have any possibility of Scotland becoming an independent country once more, that the concept of self government also appeals to Scots of other political views and none.

There are several views on how independence for Scotland can be achieved, and these are best expressed without belittling, dismissing or attacking others. Most definitely we can agree that the SNP are the key to the door. Without their sterling efforts independence will never happen. That is not a matter for dispute. However It is our job, as a wide diverse Yes movement to convince as many of our fellow Scots, many of whom who are currently not the slightest bit interested in politics or whether London or Edinburgh makes the decisions which impact their futures that independence is the best route forward for Scotland, and for their’s and their families futures. We cannot make people who are not politically minded become so. We can however work towards making them feel comfortable and confident about the idea that Scotland does not need to be governed by a neighbouring country.

On all sides of the pro Indy debate we can all agree on one thing, we are passionately committed to Scotland returning to its rightful state of independence.

Wee Ginger Dug

I have a long standing policy of refraining from attacking other people in the Yes movement. If we are to win Scotland’s independence, we can only do that with a broad based movement which encompasses a wide range of opinions, and a diversity of viewpoints. We need to attract those who disagree with us, and we can only do that if we contain within our ranks people whom those wavering No voter can identify with. That means that, by definition, our movement will contain voices which I individually don’t agree with. After all, if the Yes movement only contained people who agreed with me, it wouldn’t be a very broad based mass grass roots movement, it would be a fan club.

In this blog post I’m about to do something I never do – criticise certain parts of the Yes movement. I love this movement. I am committed to the…

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Make a movie

Whilst remembering the wartime events at Dunkirk, depicted in the big budget movie out at the moment, starring Kenneth Branagh and Tom Hardy, where 300,000 odd members of the British Expeditionary Force were evacuated off the beaches in France by a ragtag armada of sea faring craft in the face of an advancing enemy breathing down their necks, it’s worth remembering too the men of the 51st Highland Division, including the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders, who were left behind in France.

On the day immediately after the Dunkirk evacuations were complete the Highlanders launched an attack on the enemy in Normandy, initially knocking hell out of them, but then were forced to steadily succumb to an oncoming enemy force of massively overwhelming numbers.

On the second day of the fighting the Argylls suffered the highest number of casualties ever in their distinguished history.

Facing withering fire the Division of highland battalions retreated and regrouped. Their leader, General Fortune, recommended immediate evacuation, from the port of Le Havre. However Prime Minister Churchill refused, it didn’t suit his political agenda, and ordered the Highlanders to continue to fight. In essence these men were abandoned to their fate.

Fortune continued to plead the case for evacuation but by the time a begrudging consent was given by London it was too late.

Cut off by Rommel’s forces, the Scottish Division was forced to surrender, and over 10,000 men endured forced marches with very little food or water across Europe to POW camps in Poland and East Germany, many succumbing to exhaustion and hunger on these so called Death Marches.

To remind us of the horrors that war brings, and without glorification, let them make a movie about that.

Making salt

I thought at first that maybe it was a wind up. Surely yesterday’s Scottish edition of the obsessionally xenophobic and hateful Daily Mail was just up to its usual trick of stirring up the shyte when it comes to rubbishing the undeniable right of Scotland’s citizens to return to having a government of their own peers, and stop being controlled by a neighbouring country.

If the Mail’s report that henceforth the democratically elected First Minister of Scotland will no longer have access to the Prime Minister of the UK, the UK which apparently is supposed to be a partnership of nations (I decline to include the word equal in that sentence as equality has never at any stage been demonstrated in this partnership) in any way turns out to be true, then this is a step too far for London to take.

An unnamed Tory minister apparently advised the paper that from now on the status of the First Minister will be downgraded, in the London government’s view, to the level where any contact she has with the ruling power will require her to go through David Mundell, the Secretary of State for nowhere, whose remit simply requires him to spend considerable amounts of taxpayers money to promote British unionism in Scotland, and some other guy who was rapidly promoted undemocratically to the undemocratic pension supplementing home of retired Tory and Labour politicians, and party fund contributors, the House of Lords, because the citizens of the constituency where he was a candidate in the recent General Election did not consider him worthy enough to become their Member of Parliament.

Apparently the First Minister of Scotland meeting with the Prime Minister of England and the surrounding countries which England still rules gives false credence to the notion that a leader of a devolved democratic parliament in a country which has had an organised form of constitutional governance in place since before England became established as a country, is a leader of international status, and falsely misrepresents that prime Scottish government role as of an equal status to the Prime Minister of England and the remaining surrounding countries it still rules.

Looking at the current politicians who occupy both of these posts it is clear that in terms of ability alone the opposite is correct. In comparison to the First Minister of Scotland Nicola Sturgeon, the Prime Minister of England and the surrounding neighbours it still rules, Theresa May’s abilities to communicate well, to empathise, to form strategic solutions to complex problems, and simply, to lead, are very poor, which may well suggest that the Mail’s report is correct. Denying Nicola Sturgeon contact saves May from one reminder of her many shortcomings and weaknesses, one of several.

Again, if it’s true, this decision is not just an insult to the government of Scotland, it is a slight on all of the people of Scotland. One more example of English rule over what it considers a region, not a country. Westminster is flexing its muscles.

It doesn’t do to knee jerk into a reaction on these things but as Gandhi made his salt I think the time is approaching when not eating Teacakes isn’t quite going to cut it, but always, always in the form of peaceful non violent protest. In 2014 all that was needed was make a mark on a slip of paper. We do like to make it hard for ourselves, us Scots.

The UK’s negotiating position? It’s all a bit J Arthur

An article in The Economist entitled ‘Facing up to Brexit’ highlights the farce that is playing out as a result of a narrowly won referendum last summer which will put an end to the UK’s membership of the European Union. The crux of the article being that the UK government are in denial about the consequences of such action, and are facing disaster unless they wake up and smell the croissants as they disappear back over the Channel.

Before every TV news item on the subject of Brexit I’m half expecting the old J Arthur Rank opening sequence (a big burly guy in a state of partial undress clattering a gong) to appear on the screen heralding a ‘Carry On Downing Street’ knockabout comedy.

There seriously must be an argument to be made somewhere that the robotic premier, now so unpopular that polls are showing that she is the least popular Prime Minister in the immediate months after a General Election that there has ever been, and her band of assorted right wing and far right wing millionaire careerists, are trying to deliberately throw the fight, because surely they really can’t be as incompetent as they appear to be, can they?

EU negotiators, bemused by the clear lack of preparation of the British side, have made it known that they are ready to get down to the hard discussions. Discussions on the issues that were set out as key fundamentals requiring decisions, prior to any discussion on any arrangements for what might happen after Brexit. Issues that were agreed the last time Michel Barnier took easy advantage of David Davis’s poor negotiating skills. Issues like the treatment of EU and UK citizens resident in the respective countries involved, and what it’s going to cost Britain to step away from its financial commitments to the EU.

These are areas that the EU suggests that they would have expected that the UK by now would have established a firm position about.The problem seems to be that the UK doesn’t appear to have a firm position on anything, apart from immigration, and that’s not that clear. Instead they are winging it. What is not clear is whether this strategy deliberate or is it simply that there are so many factions infighting within the Tory party that they can’t come to a consensus?

Safe in the knowledge that nobody really wants her job just at the moment, although there are plenty forming alliances and quietly signalling allegiance over brandy and cigars, or during conversations in shady corners of the Palace of Westminster (the Gove’s, Boris and Rudd’s of the world) for when a leader is required to save the party when the real damage of Brexit starts to emerge, and it all hits the fan, it’s holiday time. Theresa and Mr Theresa have left their respective governments and hedge funds behind, it being the summer and everybody is entitled to a holiday, apart from those that they keep in abject poverty, and gone walkies. The hiking boot are on, and the lesser Alps of Switzerland will be alive with the sound of the clanging bells of scattered lonely mountain goats as they trek their merry way from peak to peak.(Just keep walking east Theresa and we’ll meet you back here in about a year, your lot are always talking about patriotism, that would be the most patriotic thing you could do for your country right now).

The Economist article makes the point that the civil service who are going to be left to sort all of this mess out have reduced in size by about a quarter in the last decade, and hasn’t negotiated a trade deal in a generation. Hark, I hear the private sector calling. It won’t be long until vast amounts of your money will be going into the pockets, yet again, of the big players in the world of financial consulting and accounting, the KPMG’s and Ernst & Young’s, all very cosy, once more transferring the wealth of the many to a small privileged few, and making the best of a bad situation, for them only. Watch out for that one.

Bear in mind too that currently the UK has the dubious honour of having the slowest growing economy in the whole of the EU.

The other week Theresa May was publicly asking for cross-party assistance with all of this, at least letting on that she was anyway. I think it’s time she started listening to what the likes of Nicola Sturgeon has been trying to tell her for the last 12 months, before it’s too late.