“Good evening. In tonight’s news the SNP….”

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It is stating the blooming obvious but the British Broadcasting Corporation is exactly what it’s title says it is. It is the media organ of the British state.

We should not expect it to be fair or impartial. We should not expect it to be balanced. Its purpose is to protect and promote the interests of Britain and the powers that control the assets, resources and governance of that construct of once disparate, now once more becoming increasingly disparate, countries.

We shouldn’t be surprised or particularly outraged about this fact. That’s how it is, that’s how it has always been since its creation. Until Scotland returns to its rightful state of independence and establishes its own public broadcasting service that is how it will continue. Anything we do won’t change the BBC.

The sitting British government of the time selects the Chair of the Board of Governors of the BBC. That board itself is heavily influenced by a membership of corporate and City power holders within the British state, and they appoint a Director General (CEO) to run the corporation. How could they be anything else but weighted and biased towards their own self-interests?

Up until a couple of years ago the BBC World Service was openly funded by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. It is still funded by them but now through a Grant-in-Aid scheme which doesn’t make the funding source seem so obvious.

A challenge for us, as advocates of self-government for Scotland, is not to change the BBC, it is to convince more of our family members, friends, colleagues and acquaintances that what they access on the BBC news site, or hear on Radio Scotland or watch on the TV news and current affairs shows might not necessary be 100% correct, factually or contextually. We must continue to sow an element of doubt, to encourage others to look a bit closer at what it is they are being presented with, to research and establish the facts themselves, (don’t take our word for it alone) rather than accept what, in some cases, is clearly state propaganda.

The BBC has long-established vetting processes, the infamous ‘Christmas tree’ annotation on employees personnel files if they were considered not to be of the ‘right sort’, which was dropped in the mid 1980’s because it had become known about in employee circles, being just one example of keeping out those who might engender change, and channelling and promoting those with values and opinions which concur with the protection of the establishment view.

This employment culture leads to self-censoring, consciously and sometimes unconsciously, always promoting one side of a story, the side which validates the status quo all the way up the line.

The BBC’s Andrew Marr, in an interview with the noted philosopher, historian and political activist Noam Chomsky, once quizzed Chomsky on this point.”How can you know that I’m self- censoring. How can you know that journalists are?”

Chomsky replied ” I’m not saying you are self censoring. I’m sure you believe everything you’re saying. But what I’m saying is that if you believe something different, you wouldn’t be sitting where you’re sitting.”

Much as the BBC would try and tell you differently this has clearly not changed. It’s sometimes subtle, it’s sometimes obvious and blatant, it’s sometimes almost imperceptible, but bias is always there.

Reporters trotting out the endless diatribe of SNP Bad, highlighting acidly where the Scottish government hasn’t met challenging targets they have set themselves in health, without giving any context, or comparison to the basket case which is the English NHS.

Highlighting statistics about public sector performance and justice, with presenters making glum vague references to Scotland, without explaining that they are using figures from England and Wales only.

Business analysts trawling through financial forecasts and performance data to find minuscule differences between Scotland and the rest of the UK that they can highlight as a negative.

Badly spun reports that the tax system in Scotland unjustly discriminates against the armed services, which it clearly doesn’t for the vast majority, and in context, taking into account for themselves and their families the free additional provisions in health, care and education in Scotland that they enjoy, means that service folk are factually better off serving in Scotland.

All of this and the unrelenting flow of propaganda is designed to make Scotland’s people distrust their own country’s ability to govern itself, and promote the case for the continuance of Scotland’s large neighbour governing our country.

Overcoming the state media hold on those of us who traditionally trust what they read, listen to, and watch on a daily basis is one of the biggest challenges we face. It’s not an easy task.

Whatever comes to the fore as the organisation which replaces the official central Yes Campaign this time round must find better ways to channel rebuttal and try and take the media initiative. Being mainly responsive the last time allowed the other side to set and manipulate the agenda.

A great many people of a Yes mind did an awful lot of learning very quickly in 2013-2014. That experience is going to be crucial soon as we move towards the final days of the Union.

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C-raab-it

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You’ve really got to shake your head sometimes at the sheer brass neck displayed by the harbingers of the final vestiges of a long irrelevant empire, the self destructive UK government.

Raab C Brexit, the archetypal satirical Tory, drafted in to start ramping up the intensity of insults being hurled at the European Union and rouse a Daily Hate Mail rabble, (now that the incompetent David Davis has jumped ship lest he gets the absolute blame for the upcoming economic catastrophe, citing a bad case of galloping verrucas as his excuse) is still threatening the largest tariff free trading bloc in existence, despite having his leash yanked back.

Yet again the EU are being warned that if they don’t agree to the UK’s demands Britain will renege on the financial commitments associated with its divorce from Europe.

Bizarrely, and almost quicker than his arrival at the top of the wild lunatic Brexit school of charm, decorum and negotiation, his leader, Theresa May, has punted Raab off to the one side, banished to an immediate future checking that stockpiles of pot noodles, crispy pancakes and frozen peas are up to the task of feeding a country for a month or two next spring, until the Red Cross helicopters arrive (heaven forbid they put him in charge of stockpiling drugs for cancer treatment, blood supplies and vaccines).

It seems that Theresa has decided that it’s time to deploy the big guns in the cut and thrust of negotiations with Europe. She’s drafting in herself.

Those razor sharp, quick-witted, think-and-adjust-quickly on her feet communication skills that she has demonstrated over the last few years, particularly during her snappily called ‘strong’ and ‘stable’ General Election are set for a workout. Look out Mr EU negotiator, you’re in trouble now!

Alongside her the PM will give an enhanced role to her Downing Street EU Unit, headed up by a bloke who surely has the name and the face of an Armando Iannucci comedy creation, Olly Robbins.

Getting back to Whitehall’s style of winning friends and influencing people it is maybe worth reminding the UK government that it is them who are taking the countries of the UK out of the European Union, two of whom against their democratic will, on the strength of an advisory referendum based on poor contextual information. The EU is not forcing them to do so.

The EU’s attitude to all of this small- man-syndrome empire bluster and pish is simple……

Thanks very much for your friendship for all these years, we enjoyed working and trading with you. Before you go can we work out a plan for you to clear up a few of your outstanding bills as you leave, a deal for how you treat our citizens in your country and how we treat yours in ours who hanker after a real English breakfast, oh, and a safeguard border policy which doesn’t disadvantage our member, Ireland, as a result of your isolationism? Apart from all that Bon voyage, all the very best, we wish you well, you are still on the Christmas card list, and be careful of that last step on the way out the door, it’s a bit loose.

P.S Watch out for the big orangey-faced touchy-feely shouty guy if he offers you a deal. We think he’s a bit strange and may not be trustworthy…….

Seeing past all the puffed up posturing the UK is not going to get a preferential trading deal. This would compromise the foundations of the EU and de-stabilise its members. The UK threatening them with not paying their debts won’t change that.

Meanwhile in Scotland the propaganda campaign, ably carried out by the British state’s media, to convince us that laws made in the parliament of our country are not really laws because they are subordinate to, and able to be over-ridden by, the government of our larger neighbour who rule us, continues in the Supreme Court.

Time to go folks. Dissolve the Union. The people of Scotland are sovereign. It’s time they were heard loudly and clearly above the din of the pro-British nationalist propaganda.

The voyage of the damned

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It’s like a cheap dystopian B movie, watching a wild-eyed Jeremy Hunt make a speech in Berlin about Brexit.

I’ve said and written consistently,on many occasions, from the very day that the advisory Referendum result was known, that the UK government will have one strategy, and one strategy only, for moving forward with their forthcoming potentially catastrophic divorce from the European Union, blame someone else. That is what they do, this is, and always has been, the fallback go-to position of the British state over many years, and that is undoubtedly what they are doing now.

No plan, no analysis, no contingency planning considered, minimum preparation, months of in-house argument between party factions about complex issues whilst having only the barest grasp of the detail, putting forward an individual as the responsible Minister who was clearly not up to the task, attending meetings with his EU counterparts and commons select committees completely unprepared, cringeworthy in his attempts to justify the Westminster government’s erroneous view that the EU need Britain more than Britain needs them, and a lame duck Prime Minster lost in a sea of repetitious platitudes.

Yet somehow the whole disastrous farce that is Brexit has, by blame transference, has become the fault of a group of European Commissioners who have done nothing more than stand on the sidelines over the last two years, shaking their heads in astonishment at the sheer incompetence and arrogance of an increasingly isolated bunch of self-important, over-entitled, under-qualified English public school graduates, watching them squabble with each other and come up with yet another harebrained idea, convincing themselves that they can somehow achieve the same benefits of EU membership as members, without paying for it or accepting freedom of movement.

Hunt’s language in Germany was inflammatory, a dog whistle to the British nationalist right, amongst the cacophony of other large and small dog whistles to the right currently emanating from the US, and parts of the European mainland. He likens negotiations with the EU to game of who will blink first, it won’t be John Bully, no sir, reckons Jeremy. How shallow.

He suggests that if the EU do not accede to Britain’s wishes for preferential trade there is ‘a very real risk of a Brexit no deal by accident’ a strange interpretation. If at the close of this circus Britain crashes out of the EU friendless on mainland Europe, amid chaos, food and medical supply shortages, potential civil unrest, motorways of HGV’s parked up like the worst bank holiday in history, it will not be by accident. It will be through the arrogance and incompetence of a British government unable to see that in 2018 it doesn’t have the same status or influence it had in the world 50 years ago.

Hunt’s veiled suggestion too that a no-deal Brexit outcome would result in the citizens of the UK becoming hostile towards their European neighbours ” a change in the British public’s attitude to Europe for a generation” is downright reckless.

Amongst the choruses of ”We’ll meet again”, and “Two World Wars and a World Cup”, the invocation of the bulldog spirit, the proud gathering around the red, white and blue that potential rationing and isolationism will generate, some poor unsuspecting resident of France, Germany or any other EU country. whilst in Britain, will suffer at the hands of the likes of the followers of the racist fascist numpty who goes by the pseudonym Robinson because of that kind of talk.

Watch out for us (Scotland) getting the blame for their incompetence too, because we didn’t instantly line up behind them on Brexit, even though Scots voted overwhelmingly to remain Europeans. Democracy doesn’t matter, blind loyalty to the British state does.

To avoid a future as an asset-stripped distant region of a failing isolationist state Scotland must escape this disaster. The Union must be dissolved. The people of Scotland have sovereignty over their destiny. They need to see past the pliable biased state media propaganda and take their future into their own hands. It’s the only way out. It really is.

Boris – A PM in waiting!

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Now that Boris Johnson has resigned as Foreign Minister (Amber Rudd having resigned as Home Secretary in April 2018) we can exclusively release this report from the Brexitman Papers 2017, the fictional diary of the former right honourable Harry Brexitman, of the Light Horse.

Brexitman, late a Member of Parliament (prior to a scandal involving a bawdy house of temptation somewhere between Chancery Lane and Fleet Street) ex- junior equerry to HM the Duke of Edinburgh, and now foreign affairs consultant to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, as well as a silent director and shareholder of five separate major banking and financial institutions based in Bermuda, Jersey, and, curiously, on a small fishing vessel somewhere in Scapa Flow, provides an insider’s on the spot view which highlights the nature of the relationship the former Foreign Secretary had with his leader, Prime Minister Theresa May.

The Tory Conference 2017….diary extract begins…..

” I knew it was a mistake. I bloody well knew I shouldn’t have gone, but old Boris can be persuasive.

‘Come on Brex old chap’ he’d hollered from his office. ‘It’ll be a lark, I promise you. A decent paid-for-jolly is not to be sniffed at. We can enjoy a few days away from the tedium of this place. The bloody Eurocrats can wait.They know we don’t have a plan anyway so a few days break won’t matter. I’ve got to be at this bloody conference so you may as well join me.’

And with that the bewildering endless hours I’d spent pondering over tedious statistical reports from Foreign office boffins, some predicting massive disastrous Armageddon-like falls in trade, others suggesting survival as long as we suck up to that crazy bastard across the pond, came mercifully to an end for a few days. I was off to Manchester as part of Boris’s team for the Tory Conference.

Why they couldn’t have held it somewhere on the south coast I’ll never know. Bloody Manchester, full of oiks and unemployed DJ’s.

I’d known Boris since Eton, where I’d been on the periphery of the worryingly powerful group that he, Pfeff, as I’d known him as then, and his friend David, were part of. A small elite bunch who were slightly out there in terms of their attitude to life and their place in it, seeing others simply as only useful in service of their needs.

I’d tried several times to break into their inner circle, most notably on one occasion via the traditional Bullingdon Pay Homage to the Crackling ceremony but found at the last minute that my nerve had gone. Parlour-maids, nanny, air stewardesses, and once even with my father’s floozy (the governor being in a brandy fuelled coma on a sofa in his study at the time) but a pig, Sus scrofa domesticus. No, not for Harry Brexitman, I simply couldn’t do it.

‘Come and work for me’, he’d said, when I’d bumped into him one Autumn mid- morning after the European referendum unexpectedly in Horseguards. ‘You’ve plenty of experience abroad in the army. Join us at the FO. Just do what I do, lounge around a bit, look like you know what your talking about, shout at a flunkey or two now and then, and then it’s three hour lunches in the Strand and a hasty withdrawal to the club for drinks at five o clock every day. C’mon Harry, this is right up your street man.’

Now months later I was wondering when it would be, at last, that the British public would twig that we were no further forward, at all, in coming up with a plan to make any sort of a fist of the breakaway from the red tape circus at Brussels. In fact we were showing no signs of ever having a strategy other than wait and bloody see what happens at the time when they officially kick us out, oh, and food rationing.

Mind you, having said that, Boris, David Davis and his troupe of keystone cops are doing a great job at slowing any sort of progress down to a snails pace.

Last week a young bright spark, fresh intake as a civil servant, a graduate of the LSE and a comprehensive somewhere in Torbay, came up with an idea to retain access to the single market which might suit all sides. That afternoon he was seen heading out the front door carrying a cardboard box containing a photo of his cat and a large Toblerone, whilst being accompanied on his journey by a security guard. Davis had sent him packing.

Anyway back to the conference. I had a raging hangover, after a few days boozing and a late night, drinking and carousing at the bar with two party activists from Essex, nice young fillies they were, one of whom’s father had been on the Iron Lady’s policy team which had suggested that she test the poll tax out on the Scots first. They seemed really interested in my war stories and my cavalry moustache.

Boris, for my sins, seeing my ghost-train-like demeanour, made me sit behind him, that frightful Rudd woman and David Davis in the conference hall for the Prime Minister’s speech.

My God, that woman can drone on. I squirmed as some bloody fool demonstrator delivered her her marching papers in front of the entire audience and then headed our way shouting that Boris had sent him. Give the big shaggy chap his due, he managed to ignore the idiot, who was eventually bustled away. He’d have done us a favour if he’d taken the PM with him.

Then, looking like a rabbit who has managed to find itself on to the M1 on a bank holiday, the leader of the country launched in to an interminable coughing fit. We couldn’t tell what she was saying half the time. I think I heard her mention Randall and Hopkirk, Xanadu and pickled Asparagus at one point, but I can’t be entirely sure.

Then to cap it off the bloody signage on the stage set behind her started to drop letters on to the floor. At this development the five rows of party faithful sitting around us couldn’t have failed to hear Boris mumble very loudly at the top of his voice “She just needs to fart now and we’ve had the full set.” This drew a glance from Rudd that would have turned steel to a molten pool.

I was beginning to lose the will to live at the point when our beloved leader saved us from any further punishment by coming to an anti-climactic halt, the words ‘ strong’ and ‘stable’ ringing in my ears.

Head pounding, throat dry and sweating I used that moment, just as the haphazard clapping began in acknowledgement of the worst hour of a Prime Minister’s life in living memory, as a cue to make a sharp exit to the bar, hearing over my shoulder Ms Rudd snarl in Boris’s direction ‘Get up and applaud, you fat bastard. Cheer like you love her.’………..” It was then that I saw a look come into Boris’s eyes that I’d never seen before, and I knew that he was completely mad…..”

Apologies dear readers. At this point the diary pages immediately after this extract seem to have been immersed in liquid (possibly red wine) and are unfortunately unreadable.

(With all due respect and acknowledgment to George MacDonald Fraser and his fictional historical rogue Harry Flashman).

It is time to go

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Folks, if you haven’t already clocked it, and I’m sure pretty much all of you reading this have, beware the rising tide of nationalism in government at Westminster.

However, please please continue to warn your friends and family who are comfortable in their belief that Auntie Beeb and the daily paper wouldn’t mislead them.

From the time when UKIP blossomed, attracting the draggers of knuckles previously aligned with the far right National Front and the British National Party, winning council seats in England, taking Tory votes and eventually latching on to the right-wing of the Conservative party over many mutually held beliefs, and then ultimately being absorbed by the Tories as Farage left the field to act as their spokesperson, spending his days in the media and Question Time normalising and reinforcing extremist racist views and behaviour, it has been growing in government in England.

Brexit is a consequence of it. That horrible hate-filled creature currently in the jail who uses the false name Robinson is another, who incidentally was the subject of pleas for clemency by representatives of Trump’s administration whilst in the U.K last week, that is frightening.

We look at America and all that is happening there. The groundwork is indeed being laid for fascism, and is well down that road. As Fintan O Toole described it in the Irish Times recently, and I paraphrase, Trump is market testing extremism, testing how much the citizens on America will stand on issues like immigration and law and order, before adjusting as he see’s fit to suit his agenda. Make no mistake, It’s happening in Britain too.

People see Boris Johnson as a bit of a clown, like Trump, but do not be fooled by either of them, Johnson and his rightwing cabal are hellbent on creating a Britain where they can delude themselves that the empire didn’t recede to a nominal Commonwealth, where Mosley wasn’t defeated and banished to Paris, where the Suez crisis turned out to be a roaring triumph for Britannia, and a population of worker ants spend their lives running themselves into the ground whilst doffing their caps and gratefully hooraying sycophantly at the good fortune of a small number of elites, our betters, who deserve their entitlement to all of privilege and fame because they make the decisions.

Johnson made a speech yesterday in the House which was considered to be his resignation speech from his post as Foreign Secretary, a role he made a complete farce of during his tenure.

If there was a British subject in trouble anywhere in the world you could guarantee he’d make it worse. If there was a foreign leader requiring diplomacy he’d insult them, if there was a war torn area somewhere requiring the dead and grievously wounded to be treated with respect he’s your man to publicly humiliate them. The words frivolous and lazy on his report card are probably not strong enough to describe his attitude to the duty of government.

He spoke of it being not too late to save Brexit and of a “needless fog of self-doubt” descending in his government since the Brexit vote.

He talked of the ” bright certainties” that followed the referendum on divorce from the European Union.

He sorrowfully mourned that the case for a “strong independent self-governing Britain” hasn’t been turned into what he thinks is a strong negotiation position.

All of his dialogue, all of his sound bites, his quirky wee phrases, are abstract vapid nonsense, with no substance, designed to act as a whistling call to Daily Hate Mail, Express and other right wing newspaper readers.

Two years down the line Brexiteer policy is still ‘We’re British damn you, we built an Empire!’

Worse, him and his right wing mates are self-aggrandising and congratulating themselves to the extent that they consider themselves to be champions of the people, mentally seeing themselves in the mould of their heroes of the past. They will be ‘fighting on the beaches’ next.

Jacob Rees-Mogg, who you could only describe as looking like an older Horace Broon after he’d been ill, described Johnson as a ‘statesman’ after that speech yesterday. He’s obviously a slice of gammon short of a good sandwich, but it’s an old technique, build somebody up as something they are not, keep reinforcing it, get a biased pliant media to help you, and joe soap will believe it.

They are poised to make a move, the placeholder of leadership will be shunted off to walk amongst as many fields of hay as she likes, and they will start setting the scene for a right wing isolationist future which those who fought a war, some making the ultimate sacrifice, would all of these years later never have imagined. Fascism by the back door.

Scotland is not going that way. They are not taking us with them. We will not let it happen. We cannot let it happen.

Independence as a small outward looking positive progressive social democratic Northern European country is the only answer. It is the right answer for Scotland’s future.

Dave does a Trump

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Following on from what can only be described as the mass misunderstanding of the century, where Donald Trump can say with a straight face to an audience of the world’s press that the words that came out of his gob the day before yesterday, during another press conference jointly with Russian leader Vladimir Putin, were in fact diametrically opposed to what he actually thought he’d thought he’d thought he’d said, resulting in him issuing, amongst the hot wind, a pretty huge correction of proportions possibly never seen before, which he hopes will somehow get him off the hook with the American people, it seems a certain former UK Prime Minister, who has been wrestling with his conscience now for four years, has taken the opportunity of this time of full disclosure and correction to come out of the super-rich woodwork.

David Cameron, looking over the text of a speech he made to a closed door audience in Aberdeen (they were always behind closed doors) on the Monday prior to the 2014 Independence Referendum in Scotland, has decided to issue a few wee corrections to sections of what he thought he thought he said that day………..

“We meet in a week that could change the United Kingdom forever. Indeed, it could end the United Kingdom as we know it.

On Thursday, Scotland votes, and the future of England is at stake. On Friday, Scots could be once again living in their own country,with a different place in the world and a different future ahead of them.

This is a decision that could break up our extended supremacy over our neighbouring nations, and release Scotland from the yoke of the UK.

And we must be very clear. There’s no going back from this. No re-run. This is a once-and-for-all decision.
If Scotland votes yes, the UK will split, and we will go our separate ways forever.

When people vote on Thursday they are not just voting for themselves, but for their children and grandchildren and the generations beyond.

So Let me speak threateningly to the people of Scotland today about what is at stake. I speak for the elite, the establishment across England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

I speak for those of that group in Scotland too, who would be heart-broken to have their wealth and status threatened by the break-up of the United Kingdom.

We in London would be utterly heart-broken to wake up on Friday morning to be parted from a country we control and manipulate, to know that Scots would no longer join with the English, Welsh and Northern Irish in our Army, Navy and Air Force, reinforcing our financial and political interests in foreign lands,or take part in UK-wide celebrations and commemorations of our notorious imperial past, in UK sporting teams from the Olympics to the British Lions.

The United Kingdom would be no more. UK pensions would become Scottish pensions, UK passports would become EU Passports if the right-wing of my party take complete control, we’d threaten Scots that they can’t use the UK pound which is partly theirs anyway, which we can’t do anything about.

Alex Salmond and the nationalists reject claims that Scotland’s economy would suffer if Scotland took control of its own finances and resources.

The greatest example of government by surreptitious imposing of a larger nation’s will disguised as democracy the world has ever known, of faux openness, of increasing suspicion of people of different nationalities and faiths coming together as one, would be no more. Scotland would be at last be free of this.

It would be the making of a country that launched the Enlightenment, who were our partners when we abolished slavery, a northern nation which produced many significant drivers of the industrial revolution, they helped us defeat fascism, the re-emergence of a country that people around the world respect and admire and recognise as a sovereign nation.

It’s only become Great Britain because of the greatness of Scotland and our exploitation of its people, its resources, its assets, its innovation and its strategic geographical position.

Because of the thinkers, writers, artists, leaders, soldiers, inventors who have made this country what it is.

It’s Alexander Fleming and David Hume; William Mcllvanney and Andy Murray and all the millions of people who have played their part in this extraordinary success story, the Scots who led the charge on pensions and the NHS and on social justice. They did all of this despite us.

For the people of Scotland to walk away now would be like building a brand new home – walking through the door, and switching on a brilliant light to a new life.

So I would say to everyone voting on Thursday, please remember. This isn’t just any old country. This is the Scotland. This is your country, not mine.
And you know what makes you truly great? It’s not your economic might or military prowess – they are what make us in London truly great,no, it’s your values. Scottish values. Fairness. Freedom. Justice.

The values that say wherever you are, whoever you are, your life has dignity and worth.
The values that say we don’t walk on by when people are sick, that we don’t ask for your credit card in the hospital, that we don’t turn our backs when you get old and frail,that we don’t turn a blind eye or a cold heart to people around the world who are desperate and crying out for help.

I think Britain is the greatest country on earth in which to accumulate wealth, and cannot really understand why it is that you do not see it that way.

And this is why my wealthy colleagues and friends could not bear to see that conduit for passing the wealth of the many to the few ending – for good, for ever – on Friday.

Now I know that there are many people across Scotland who are planning to vote Yes. I understand why this might sound appealing. It’s the promise of something different.

I also know that the people who are running the Yes campaign are painting a picture of a Scotland that is better in every way, and they can be good at painting that picture. But when something looks too good to be true in this context – that’s usually because we have spent generations feeding you endless propaganda to destabilise your belief in your own country.

It is my duty to be clear about the likely consequences of a Yes Vote. Independence would not be a trial separation,it would be a painful divorce for us at Westminster.

And as Prime Minister I have to tell you what that would mean.

It would mean we would try and bluff Scots into thinking that we can no longer share the same currency even though this essentially has no credence.

It would mean the armed forces we have built up together over centuries being split up forever, and the remaining UK’s ability to take part in illegal wars abroad compromised.

It would mean our pension funds sliced up – at some cost to the Treasury in London.

It would mean the borders we have between Scotland and England would become international but would still be so easily crossed, unless the right-wing of my party achieve their ambition to remove the UK from the European Union.

It would mean that we can no longer do what we euphemistically call ‘pooling resources’,or as you may call it, use the revenue from Scotland’s natural resources and assets across the whole of the UK to fund repairing and extending the M25, the Millennium Dome, Canary Wharf or super-fast rail links between London and Newcastle.

This is not guesswork. There are no question marks, no maybe this or maybe thar, although something tells me at the back of my mind that in a few years-time the future of the UK and its wider relationship with its neighbours may be subject to many question marks, awash with endless views on maybe this or maybe that.

The status quo is gone. This campaign has swept it away. There is no going back to the way things were.

A vote for No means real change and we have spelled that change out in practical terms, with a plan and a process.

If we get a No vote on Thursday, that will trigger a major, unprecedented programme of devolution with additional powers for the Scottish Parliament, which as soon as we can we will begin to dismantle. So a No vote actually means faster, fairer, safer and better change. Perhaps I’m being slightly ambitious here, these are only words after all. Just wait until you hear what I’ve got to say on Friday!

And this is a vital point: Scotland is not an observer in the affairs of this country. Scotland is shaping and changing the United Kingdom for the better – more so today than at any point in the last three hundred years and will continue to help shape the constitution of our country. Its parliamentarians are held in such a high regard in the Commons that a hush descends around the chamber every time one of them rises to speak so that all can hear what they have to say.

Let us fool you that ‘Yes’ is not a positive vision. I know that really it’s not about dividing people, closing doors, making foreigners of our friends and family but I want you to believe that it is. However what is coming in the future, once I’ve jumped ship, as my party leads the UK down a dark road, will most definitely be about dividing people, closing doors, and making foreigners of our friends and family. In fact the word “foreigner’ will become a dirty word.

So this is my message to the people of Scotland: I want you to stay. Financially and strategically it is a complete disaster for us if you go .Our seat at the UN Security Council will be taken from us. We’ll be just one more post-imperial small western nation boring everyone to tears with our past glories. Head and heart and soul, we need you to stay.

In two days, this long campaign will be at an end. At the end of the day, all the arguments of this campaign can be reduced to a single fact: we are better together, no honestly, stop laughing.”

Thanks for that Dave.

We don’t need the good old days

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Watching a social media clip this morning from the chamber of the House of Commons, and in fact thinking about the whole Brexit return to mini empire project itself, I am reminded of a TV programme I loathed as a child (and you’ll have to be of a certain age to remember it) “The Good Old Days”.

For those who are too young to have seen it, and those who have happily blotted it out of their memory, this was a weekly light entertainment offering, from the BBC of course, which tried to reincarnate the days of Victorian/ Edwardian music hall for a second half of the twentieth century viewing public . The audience and on stage turns were all dressed up in period costumes, men with the big dodgy moustaches, top hats and tails, and chirped songs about strolling along on a sunny afternoon in Regents Park whilst Campbell puts down the Sepoys for the glory of the Empire. A sentimental celebration of a past which never actually existed, it was truly dreadful. A harking back to time of Britain’s perceived greatness, which should have been well and truly left there.

Looking at the particular media clip of Westminster I was watching it came across as very similar to the Good Old days in many respects. Wee John Bercow, the Speaker, for example, sitting atop his lofty perch, obviously loving the attention, the limelight, is very similar to the host of the show, Leonard Sachs. Whilst Sachs banged a gavel to get attention before treating the audience to examples of his extensive command of the English language, Bercow hollers the requisite “Order, Order”, before chucking in to the mix phrases of luxuriant words of many letters, when perhaps a simple one will do, for entertainment, jollying the proceeding along, herding the guffawing benches of dandies, the self-entitled and the hereditary rich through another dull session of government between luncheon and a late dinner at the club. It helps pass the time.

It is showmanship, in the spirit of tradition. It is parliamentary, keeping up the standards that are expected. Maintaining and exploiting power has been done this way for centuries, and must be protected, say those doing the exploiting, but is it democratic government?

Coming on to the media clip itself, having watched the other day as a session in the Commons chamber turned to farce as copies of the government’s Brexit white paper were sent flying through the air towards the various benches in response to comments from opposition parties that they hadn’t actually seen it before debating its content, it didn’t really surprise me that much when a scenario unfolded which demonstrates the inefficiency, inadequacy and often farcical nature of how the business of Westminster is conducted.

An amendment which had been proposed by the SNP, and had already been accepted by the government, and therefore was expected to pass through on the nod, came up for a vote. Wee John the redoubtable, controller of the rambunctious, proselytizer of the ancient ways of the House, and all round advocate of sesquipedalian fetishism, called the vote. As expected the majority Scottish contingent shouted “Aye”. However the gin soaked owners of country houses and hedge fund accounts in Bermuda across the chamber, upon hearing this, automatically knee-jerked into giggling cat-calls of “No, No “ even though their leaders had already agreed to allow the vote to pass, (which wee John then had to remind them about in his eloquent but longwinded way).

You really do get the idea that if icebergs starting floating up the Thames and the SNP proposed a motion that the Commons janny switches all the lights off in the toilets before he or she goes home every night for the good of the planet they’d still vote against it, just for the sake of it. That’s not government for grownups.

Contrast Holyrood, where a vote can happen with the press of a button, with Westminster, where it can take endless time for government flunkies to run about counting and recording the names of bands of wandering politicians milling around a division lobby wondering what’s on the menu at Marcel’s in Knightsbridge this evening. It’s an archaic system of rules and tradition from the past.

When you look at the advances and progress governments in places like Iceland, Norway and Denmark have made as small northern European countries in the 21st century Westminster’s style of government by patronising imposition, a millstone around our necks which is holding us back, should certainly not be in Scotland’s future. It simply doesn’t work for us. It works for those that maintain the structures of the past created to maintain power, and only for them.

Scotland will be so much better off when it returns to its rightful state as an independent nation.

If you don’t get it now you never will

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It’s been a weird last few days has it not, during this, the continuing incremental wind-down to the dissolution of the dysfunctional Union?

Historians will look back in hindsight and surely shake their head as they consider the complex topical questions of our current time, questions like what the actual feck is going on? Or, who the actual feck knows what’s going on? Or even, why the actual feck is this complete madness going on?

Events started as they were going to continue the other day when wee John Bercow, the Speaker, between his regular five minutely appeals for “Order, Order” in the House of Commons, was forced to suspend a session of the House.

This followed new Brexit Minister Raab C Brexit, who bears an uncanny resemblance in many ways to Rick Mayall’s satirical TV politician Alan B’stard, getting up off his forked tail and on to his gnarled hoofs to address the House. Raab waxed lyrically about the fabled Brexit white paper that his government were bringing forth to clear the path to pulling the plug of the UK’S economic life support system right out of the wall socket, and faced a barrage of hecklers suggesting that he was talking about a document nobody other than the authors and the government had seen.

A pretty important document you would think as the clock ticks down to Brexit doomsday. Cue wee John shutting down the debate, and scenes of flying copies of the aforementioned white paper being hurled around the chamber like bog-roll and streamers at an Argentinian Cup final. A full five minutes the Speaker allowed for Members of the House to peruse the contents of the document before carrying on the debate. I don’t know about you but I don’t think that is any way to sensibly run a parliament, unless it’s in a movie starring John Cleese, Michael Palin and Eric Idle of course, do you?

Then we had the visitation to our shores from the Great Disruptor. As welcome as a kidney stone, the lumbering narcissist of the free world rode into town astride Airforce One, with his body double spending the weekend flying high on a string over various parts of London and Scotland as a diversion in case of any trouble.

On the way in he left the current UK Prime Minister without a name to call her own in an interview with the dodgiest of dodgy red-tops, only to then do a complete about turn the next day when faced with a joint press conference standing beside that same person. He then went on to claim that what the dodgy red-top reported was “fake news’ even though they produced actual recorded evidence of him criticising Theresa May.

He further done her in with a set of kitchen knives between the shoulder blades by promoting the idea that the ever-sleekit Bullingdon Club boy Boris Johnson would make a fine Prime Minister. He’s always liked him and he’s a great guy is Boris. See Trump and diplomacy, he’s right good at it said no one ever. I can’t work out if all of this is part of the plan or just that he’s a muttonhead.

His complete disregard, and in fact insulting behaviour, towards his hosts put Theresa May’s leadership under yet another spotlight and she was found weak again, as she has been found previously on many occasions during her premiership. I’ll say this for her though, she is resilient. Although she still crazily insists that no deal with the EU is better than a bad deal, whatever a bad deal is in her mind. In mine it means anything which leaves the UK outside of receiving any of the benefits of being a member of the EU.

Before jetting off to what he considers his personal fiefdom, ‘Skatland’, the big galoot had the opportunity to take tea with wee Lizzie Windsor of London and experience a bit of pomp.

Now I know the wee auld dear may not be in what you would call the usual worn down health of many of her advanced age, never having had to scrub a front step or work eight hours a day in a paper-mill before coming home to feed her man and the weans their dinner, but anyway putting that to one side she is due the respect of any wee auld dear in her nineties.

We know too that Trump likes to hold hands with females he meets with, and may well have had to be reminded (several times) by his flunkies not to kiss Elizabeth the First of Scotland, or hold her hand, but the scene which unfolded as the ceremonial inspection of the Guard was about to take place was like a dark comedy.

The poor wee wummin was struggling to get up over the curb on to the grass.Did it bother him, did he notice? Naw. Then, once she’d safely negotiated her way on to the grass he walks away and leaves her. Whereupon she comes up one side of him, then the other, like trying to pass a white van, before the eejit stops dead still in front her, with still no idea where she is, almost causing the wee auld dear tae collide with his not unsubstantial backside and walk up the back of his Davey Crockett hat.

I’ll tell you what, she showed great patience with him there. Her predecessors burned down Washington for less. If it was my auld gran, bless her wee soul, in that situation, and she was seven stone soaking wet, she’d have cawed the legs away from him in front of her with her walking stick and he’d have been chewing on a gub full of expensive royal turf whilst staring at his puffy reflection close up in the shiny bull of a Welsh guardsman’s boot. According to Donald afterwards wee Liz is a beautiful person both inside and out. I’m sure she reciprocates.

Then it was off to Turnberry for golf, golf, more golf, a touch of aerobatics from Greenpeace (kudos indeed) and a thousand and one imaginative, some hard-hitting, some belly laugh funny, banners and chants of ordinary people around Scotland, with hearts, with consciences, with humanity, with love a major motivator of what makes them tick, all bound together with a common goal, to protest against this dog-whistler of far right-wing hate, to make it known throughout the world that he is not welcome in Scotland. Someone really should make a photographic collage of the banners. It would be worth seeing.

Oh, and where was that dangerous nasty separatist nationalist divider of people and breaker-up of precious enduring Unions, Nicola Sturgeon, whilst all of this was going on? She was promoting love, tolerance , diversity, respect and understanding at the Pride event in Glasgow.

With things the way they are folks if you don’t get it now you are never going to get it. Scotland must leave this Mad Hatters Tea Party behind. It really must. Independence is the only way out of this.

The circus comes to town

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There is absolutely nae truth in the rumour, nae truth at all, that Nicola Sturgeon has suddenly discovered an ancient great auntie who is on her last legs (poor auld dear) in the remotest remote part of the remote area of the island of Fawr Awa, a small island to the north west of the Western Isles then out a bit further, and then sharp left at the puffin colony on the sticky oot rocks, that not many people have heard of, who is desperate to speak tae the First Minister before she heads off to the great croft in the sky, and has made it clear that she needs to see her this weekend, the whole weekend.

However there is always a silver lining with every cloud which means that the future Lord quivery lip to be , the Secretary of State Against Scotland, gets to meet, greet and sook up to the biggest nutcase that ever was handed power in a Western country since a previous nutter in the 1930’s decided he would like to look like Charlie Chaplin. This guy has the potential if left unchallenged to be ruthlessly lethal. He has no conscience, just ego. Wee Davie won’t mind though, he’ll get his phoatie in the paper, he might get a chance of a wee shot of the Great Dictator’s putter, and if he is a good boy he may even be lucky enough to hold hands with him. (much as I loathe the politics of poor bedraggled Theresa May I did notice that every time the man with the tiny hands and the outrageous Davey Crockett headgear lets go of her hand when he walks her along a path for a photo shoot her first instinct is to rub her hand against her skirt, which she has to consciously resist the urge to do, so she’s not all bad).

He’s a nasty piece of work, putting the good word out too for hard Brexiteers, pushing Johnson as a potential Prime Minister. Can you imagine that? How bad can it get?

Anybody that knows me, and as these blogs would attest. would agree I am not in any shape or form a royalist but the idea of Wee Betty spending an hour in the company of the Trumpet is just laughable and bizarre. I can hear him now at the press conference afterwards. “ Mr President, how was your meeting with the Queen?” “She loves me, she found me to be a very stable genius. We had a fantastic time drinking tea together, she is a nice old broad, and I made her a lucrative offer to set this place up as a theme park and casino, she’s thinking it over.” (Admit it, you read that In his voice eh).

The world has indeed gone crazy. Sadly we hear that the look-alike Trump baby giant blimp will not be allowed to be flown over Turnberry by protestors during his weekend of residence. That is because they expect the hot air coming out of wee Davey’s mouth. as the representative of London’s government in Scotland, to be enough to have him airborne and floating over the links on the end of string, and we wouldn’t want two balloons to collide. He might burst.

I never thought I’d feel proud of a headline in the Hootsmon, but today’s headline which accompanies a story about Keith Brown, the SNP Deputy leader’s views on the visit, entitled ‘SNP chief will tell Trump You’re not welcome here’ rejecting the incumbent of the US Presidency’s politics of division and hatred, gave me a warm glow.

Get out Trump. We don’t want your kind here.

The summer of love

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It is some carry on this Brexit lark, is it not?

In the length of time it takes ‘us’ to despatch yet another mediocre soft touch from the easiest run in a sporting tournament since some other lions managed to avoid a draw against the Christian’s in the Coliseum, meaning that ‘we’ are in the semi final, the Minister for Brexit, who has spent two years avoiding Brexit, or speaking to anybody important or relevant about it, other than to say how much of a doddle it will be, how the French and Germans need us more than we need them so they’ll be queuing up at the door like a Provy woman on a Friday, and that once it’s over our re-emerging great nation will once again waive the rules, all of that shyte, has chucked it, to be replaced by some numpty who reckons that people use Food-banks because now and again they experience a wee cashflow problem, ye know, kinda like when the stock market is closed and you can’t convert some of your shares in Waitrose to ready cash until Monday, or maybe you’ve just mistakenly emptied your back pocket on spending money for young Beatrice and Toby’s showjumping trip to the south of France. That kind of thing.

It doesn’t bode well does it? Then again, did anything about Brexit ever bode well?

Hard on his heels the Foreign Secretary, a man who singlehandedly, just by opening his bowels and letting his colon rumble, ensured that a British citizen and mother of a small child languishes in an Iranian jail, a top guy who stated that a war ravaged area on the Middle East will make a great tourist area, ripe for investment, once they clear all of the bodies off the beaches, decided he’d resign too. There’s a loss, eh, not.

These two jokers are part of a bigger plan, a coup in which the current weak and unstable Prime Minister, who has simply been a placeholder since Cameron bolted for the private sector is set to be taken down like one of those ageing wildebeest with a gammy leg that cannae run very fast that David Attenborough always likes to describe to us whilst we are eating our spaghetti bolognese, her throat metaphorically torn out by the baying pack.

She’s held off the excesses of the mad right-wing Rees -Mogg’s Redwood’s, the Fox’s and Gove’s so far but telling them that their vision of Empire 2 is clearly bollocks and retaining some form of trading partnership with EU is the only way to avoid complete disaster is the rock upon which they will attempt to ensure she perishes.

Is Wee Fluffy Mundell, the Secretary of State Against Scotland, next to go, on a promise of a seat higher up the table, nearer the good biscuits, the ones with shiny wrappers on? We’ll see.

One thing is for sure though, if the ensuing stramash results in a meltdown, and yet another General Election, we of a Scottish independence mind need to be ready, and when I say we I don’t mean the BBC brainwash English fitbaw team.

We’ve a mandate. If there’s a General Election the manifesto must make the vote a clear choice for the people of Scotland. Stick with this Westminster madness, or run, run very fast, as a small progressive social democratic European country ready to continue a partnership which already exists, a partnership which will prosper in the future, both for Scots and for our European friends.

The time to go is approaching folks. Let’s be ready to chap those doors.