Is that clear?

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The Secretary of State Against Scotland has surfaced at last. After much ducking and diving behind office furniture packing boxes, and hiding in Business Class with the curtain shut in highly important visits to potential markets for smoked haddies, macaroon bars and white pudding he’s finally been fully exposed to the light of day once more, and our loveable propaganda press have caught up with him……….

(Tame British state TV news journalist…)

“Secretary of State, thank you for agreeing to be interviewed today, here on the highest cliff top of a remote mountain in the middle of the Amazon jungle only accessible by a torturous and dangerous climb up a sheer cliff face after wading shoulder-deep in a raging torrent of a river occupied by piranhas, three eyed crocodiles and infested by tiny wee bacteria that give you wildly explosive diarrhoea. You’ve obviously been doing some great work out here promoting Scottish goods and services, and Scotland itself as a place to visit and study.”

(Viceroy David Mundell, with a smug expression….)

“Thank you tame British State TV news journalist. Yes, I’m always working hard, working hard for the Scottish people.”

(Tame British state TV news journalist…)

” So, let me ask you this. You are on the record as saying that during your government’s comprehensive and thorough preparations for Brexit there has been no specific analysis carried out of the likely economic impact of the UK’s break away from the European Union on Scotland. Yet in the few weeks it has become clear that is in fact incorrect.

Do you regret that, and are you prepared to apologise to the people of Scotland?”

(Viceroy David Mundell, becoming flushed…)

” Let me say this first. The Prime Minister is very clear in a very clear way about the clarity of the relationship she sees us having with the EU in the future. She has made that very clear. I have always answered any specific questions on this with factual facts. There have been leeks, in fact there have been many leeks, sometimes there have been carrots too. Some of these have been wildly different in accuracy from the clear robust plan for the outcome of Brexit of the Prime Minister. I am confident in her vision. Bear in mind too that none of these leeks bear even the remotest comparison or resemblance to the highly structured strategy put forward by our clear and assertive Prime Minister, whom, I reiterate, I fully support in this.

(Tame British state TV news journalist…)

” But Secretary of State, I ask you once again, are you prepared to apologise to the people of Scotland?”

(Viceroy David Mundell, looking like he is about to follow through…)

“I am entirely convinced that the documents you have alluded to weren’t actually documents at all. Everybody knows that there have been many documents that are not documents, and this is one of them. I have been clear, and the Prime Minister has been clear about this.

I never said there wouldn’t be challenges with Brexit. In fact you are challenging me right now but I prefer to concentrate on opportunities. That’s what the people of Scotland want me to do. After all, it is them I serve.”

(Tame British TV news journalist, starting to think about his own professional credibility…)

” But Mr Mundell, are you prepared to accept that Brexit will seriously damage the economy of Scotland?”

(Viceroy David Mundell, now uncomfortably unsure about the current status of his tartan trews…)

“Look, my focus is on the opportunities that will come out of this process. There are many sectors which will find their circumstances are significantly different once we leave the EU. Fishing, for example, will find itself in significantly different circumstances once our enduring UK has parted from the Common Fisheries Policy. ”

(Tame British state TV news journalist, now not so tame…)

” But isn’t that just stating the blooming obvious Secretary of State? That’s like a football commentator saying if the ball crosses the line between the posts and under the crossbar it’s a goal.

Of course fishing will find itself in significantly different circumstances by the very fact that the UK will have left the EU, surely?”

(Viceroy David Mundell, gazing from side to side, anywhere but at the journalist…)

“Ah, you are misrepresenting me now. What I am saying is that I am clear that I am confident in the clarity and leadership that the Prime Minister is providing on this matter.

Her strength and stability make me confident that we will end up with the best possible outcome, which is what Scottish business leaders tell me they want.”

(Actual TV news journalist, bit between his teeth…)

“Secretary of State, would you agree that this tomato I am showing you, that I am holding in my hand, is in fact red?”

(Viceroy David Mundell, wishing that piranhas could fly as well as swim..)

” On this point I want to make myself crystal clear. I don’t believe that it is inevitable that there will be a negative economic impact on Scotland as a result of Brexit at all. The Prime Minister’s preferred outcome of the negotiations with the European Union is very clear on that.”

(TV news journalist ready to take a self-inflicted heeder off the cliff top…)

” Ok, so you are not willing to apologise or answer that last question. We just have time for one final answer.

David Mundell, are you prepared to accept that if Theresa May fails to convince commissioners at the European Union that the UK deserves to have access to the same, or preferential access, to the benefits of being a member of the EU without the responsibilities of membership, Scotland’s economy will suffer badly as a result?”

(Viceroy David Mundell coming over all indignant…)

” Goodness, now you are just being ridiculous.” That could never happen.”

(TV news journalist… shaking head from side to side…)

” Back to you in the studio Jackie…..”

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Polishing the image

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Talk about blowing your own trumpet.

There can be no doubt that Ruth Davidson, Leader of the Scottish Conservative & Unionists, Tank Commander, Colonel of Signals, Bomb Disposal Expert or tawtie howker, depending on your view of her recent staged Princess Diana-like phoaties, and bullsitter (no that’s not a spelling mistake) is currently involved in a self-promotion campaign with the intent of moving on to pastures new, and better things.

Her opinion piece in that bastion of all things British, the Hootsmon, entitled ” Ruth Davidson: The Scots restoring our faith in charity” regarding the enduring consistency of the benevolence, charity and fellowship of well off self-made Scots towards their ain folk and further afield firmly attests to that self-promotion.

Accompanying a phoatie of herself, and her flag, down on her hunkers getting ready to defuse a land mine, perhaps with a hard stare, like a representative of state or international envoy, on the scale of minor royalty or an ex-US President perhaps in a few short paragraphs Ruth of the Big Future in London manages to place herself in that bracket, one who moves among the mighty.

This she does firstly, as per the photo, linking herself to the very worthy Halo Trust, who have done some great work in land mine clearance in Afghanistan.

She swiftly moves on to talk about her and Bill and Melinda Gates, who were visiting Edinburgh University recently, before giving us a rundown of some of the charitable deeds of current entrepreneurs of Scotland who are doing great works to help those less fortunate than themselves, including Sir Ian ‘the oil’s running out, no it’s not’ Wood.

The contribution these wealthy individuals make to their fellow Scots, and to charitable projects abroad is commendable, of course.

However the final sentence of the piece, leads us to where Ruth sees her future. A future at Westminster, a rising star in the post-Brexit new conservative age, eventually moving from one chamber to the other over time.

In closing, having described the good works of the likes of Jim McColl, Ann Gloag and Tom Hunter, Ruth, who moves in those circles her inference suggests, firmly makes it clear that ” We are making a difference, every day.”

“We” Ruth? Is she in all seriousness linking herself to such worthies, to selfless acts, to charity on a significant scale, really? The only thing evident from her writing that is on a significant scale is hypocrisy. In fact having observed the policies of the political party she represents for over forty years I would say it is staggering.

Keep polishing that image though Ruth, there must be camp full of near-starving refugees from the horrors of war, and British sold munitions, waiting somewhere for your visit with a BBC camera crew and some cliquey photojournalists.

Westminster awaits. Don’t trip on the lobby step on the way out.

Empty chairs, empty promises

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So there you are. How would you feel after an initial astonishing, horrifying, and quite possibly catastrophic decision being made about the future of your town, village, estate or scheme, many months of disagreement, interwoven with rhetoric and hot flatulence from the political powers-that-be about how important it is to find out how those who will be impacted ‘really feel’, then, after much consideration, a grudged agreement has been reached to hold a series of meetings to listen to the locals and resolve the issues, you’ve turned up at the local community centre on behalf of yourself, your sister and brother and law, yer granny and granda, who have lived in their house for 55 years, and Mr and Mrs Samal, the local GP and her husband, who live next door, to meet with the Cooncil, the firm of property developers that are gonnae knock seven bells out of the community you live in, ruining its economy, and their PR company, who are gonnae sweet talk you with stories about how you are going to move away to more suitable accommodation in a nice area, perhaps near a farm with lots of space where you can run free, and then…………… those you are there to meet don’t show up. No apologies, no pretence, no feigned interest, the middle of a doughnut, nothing.

That’s how Deidre Brock, Pete Wishart and Tommy Sheppard must have felt when they turned up yesterday at the Scottish Affairs Committee in Kirkcaldy, a committee which is designed to represent Scotland’s interests at Westminster, yet none of Britain’s government’s party representatives, or anyone from Newish Labour or the Liberal Obsoletes attended. The purpose of the meeting was to explore how the Post-Brexit UK immigration policy should address the needs of current migrants in Scotland, and how leaving the EU would impact the agricultural sector and Scottish rural communities. The members of parliament, who turned up, took evidence and submissions from the Fife Migrant Forum regarding their experiences of living and working in Scotland, and how Brexit has impacted their planning for the future, the National Farmers Union Scotland, Highlands and Islands Enterprise and COSLA.

A pretty important event you would think, hearing the views of groups who stand to be directly impacted by the British government’s decision to implement the results of a narrowly won non-binding referendum on a country which voted overwhelmingly against their decision?

No. The bunch of fairly recently elected lobby fodder, Treeeza and her appointed colonial Viceroy’s cheerleaders and fitbaw referees (remember them, they were the ones who promised that they would stand up for Scotland even if it meant going against their party’s wishes) and if you ever believed that I’ve got a new bridge to Fife I’d like to sell you, their dance cairds were full, their diaries choked up with photo opportunities of them wearing Union flagged sleeved jaikets, or looking cerebral whilst pointing out in to the distance with a union flag in the background, or they were too busy to attend because they were spending hours on the phone pleading with the Hootsmon to take phoaties of them dressed up in the full blast resistant and helmet gear whilst strolling through a park in Bearsden beside a wee robotic arm waving a wee red, white and blue flag stuck on the top of a remote controlled Tonka truck, to be like their pin-up idol, who is lining herself up for better (Together) things.

Like a Boxing Day sale they’ve no interest. Their political leaders have already taken a stance. Consultation was really only ever about ticking a box, and giving those staunch Unionists in Scotland, who want to believe the propaganda they spout, something to point at and say look, we are important, and we have had input in important decisions which will drastically impact us. The London government has already made their decisions about how returned EU powers will work for them, although they have not the first clue what they are going to do afterwards, once they have deliberately made the goods and services the countries of the UK produce non-competitive in comparison to our neighbours, and the Pretendy Jesus mob, equally as driven about party politics rather than what is actually the best thing for the people of the UK, who suicidally think if they play along with Brexit, it’ll lead to a Tory collapse and they can punt the geeky bloke out of the leadership chair and get back to the serious business of running the country in a Blairite for the 21st century style, troughing it up again. They have no interest in what anybody has to say about Brexit. It’s all a done deal.

When publicly pulled up by Messrs Sheppard, Wishart and Ms Brock about their non-attendance the party spokespeople asked to comment on behalf of those missing had the cheek tae try and swing the whole thing around to be about the SNP trying to cry grievance again. You simply could not paint a red neck on these people with a Dulux brush set. The Newish Labour wag had the cheek to say “ It is disappointing that once again the SNP has taken such a partisan approach by seeking to score political points, when the spirit of the committee is to work in partnership for the interests of the people of Scotland.”

I would suggest that in order to be able to promote a spirit of partnership these people would have to actually turn up in the first place, or perhaps just apologise to the groups and organisations they have disrespected who took the time to show up to state their views.

Scotland will be so much better off in every possible way once it returns to its rightful state as an independent sovereign country.

Anti-English? No. Pro-Scottish

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There are always a ready bunch of British nationalists out there in the mainstream and social media claiming that the movement for independence in Scotland is just a vile cunning ‘cover’ for anti-Englishness.

They are usually coming from the contradictory let’s make Britain “global’ again viewpoint, with chips on both shoulders, choked up with prejudices, xenophobia and red white and blue underwear. They are often the kind that describe us as divisive nationalists whilst describing themselves as ‘British patriots’, and cannot see the irony.

As we all know, the assertion that those who believe firmly that Scotland is better governed by the people in it, and not by the British state, are anti-English, is fallacious, outrageous and couldnae be further from the truth. Pro-Scottish yes, anti-English most definitely no.

How could a yearning to live in a country which governs itself ever be construed to be about anti-Englishness? Most of us have close family and friends who are English. Many of us are English by birth. Are we planning on never ever planting an affectionate smacker on the foreheads of our grannies fae Liverpool or papa’s from Newcastle ever again? Are we no more to look forward to sharing Christmas with our sister’s kids from Exeter? Will we shun our lifelong friend from the East End of London because he sounds like he drinks in the Queen Vic?

No, this is such a childish, foolish and divisive spin to put on a movement which only wants Scotland to be like the rest of the world, where it is the normal natural state of affairs for a country to govern itself. We are not better than anyone else, we don’t see ourselves as superior, but we certainly aren’t inferior either, and once we have our own front door key I’m sure they’ll find us the best of neighbours, voluntarily.

Anti-English we are not. However we are anti some things, things like anti-inequality, anti-unfairness, anti-exploitation, anti-poor health and anti-poverty.

The continuing steady momentum towards the inevitable independence of Scotland comes as a direct consequence of long-term mismanagement, exploitation, incompetence and duplicity by the remote government of another country controlling its resource and asset rich neighbour, a neighbour it sees that it has been able to comprehensively manipulate, or as they like to call it down Whitehall way or on the Tory and Labour benches at Holyrood “pooling and sharing.”

Times are most definitely a-changing. The people of Scotland’s eyes are opening, forelock tugging to our ‘betters’ is in the past. Downton Abbey is just a tv programme.

A research report by the Scottish Government published a year ago highlights that the richest 1% in Scotland own more wealth than the bottom 50%.

Just think about that for a minute. You live in a country which has been blessed with an abundance of natural resources, innovation in technology and science, world renowned export food and drink industries for several decades, the envy of many other countries in the developed world.

How can that statistic be true? How can it be? Other countries who discovered that they had a vast natural resource around their coastline at the same time as Scotland now have some of the highest living standards in the world, the best health care, citizens who live consistently to a ripe old age, with excellent standards of housing and first class public services, yet in Scotland 1% of the population is better off than the lowest 50% of the population?

Here’s a few other facts (Not the alternative kind, not fake news, the real deal).

In 2016, in one of the top 20 richest countries in the world, 1 in 5 Scots were living in poverty of some kind. The number of Scots in severe or extreme poverty in 2016 had increased over the previous decade to around 710,000 (After housing costs). More than 1 in 5 (220,00 ) Scottish children live in severe poverty, a comparative figure significantly higher than most other European countries. 43% of people in Scotland of working age who are in severe poverty live in households where at least 1 adult is working, in low pay.

Drug deaths in Scotland in 2016 were up, 867, the highest ever recorded figure, and up 23% on the previous year.

The average life expectancy of Scots in 2016 in comparison to the South East of England was 3.3 years less. Looking closer at areas where high poverty exists in Scotland statistics show that men from affluent areas are likely to live around 12.5 years longer than those from the poorest areas.

The numbers of Scots who required the use of Food banks increased by 398% in the period 2012 to 2014. In 2015 the Trussell Trust recorded 133, 726 referrals for three-day emergency supplies in Scotland, around 44,000 of which involved children. Between April 2016 and March 2017 this increased to 145,865 three-day emergency food supplies, of which 47,955 involved children.

By contrast around 432 families or corporations own 50% of Scotland’s private land (that is s lot of land). This is very different to the norm in most other European countries, and as mentioned above, 1% of the richest in Scotland own more than the poorest 50% put together. Think about that.

See the next time somebody tries to tell you that you must hate English people because you want your country to govern itself put them straight, will you?

Not the norm

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I have nothing at all against the hereditary privileged very rich auld couple who occupy the big hoose, that needs thirty six odd million quid worth of your money to unblock the cludgie, doon the bottom end of the Mall in London, or their offspring, or their offspring’s offspring.

As human beings these people are the same as you and me, flesh and blood. They are no’ ordained as Gods, they are not super-beings, they don’t fart emeralds or rubies, I am not their subject, or their possession, they are not better than me, I am not better than them. We are equals.

Like the rest of humanity I’m sure some of them are pleasant, kind-hearted folk, and others not so, that is the nature of our species.

What I do object to is the symbol that they represent, the ingrained system and network built up over centuries to protect the wealth and privilege of a very small percentage of society, a system that uses their celebrity, ceremony and the mythology which had grown up around them, to prop itself up, to reinforce itself, to reinvigorate and manufacture a rebirth or slightly adapted makeover of its institutions (as each new generation of them comes along) maintaining its power base, its control, by manipulating and mesmerising the many, some of whom who are bizarrely utterly bedazzled that a royal) deems to look them in the eye and make small talk with them for half a minute on the way past. Think about that for a second.

Years ago the likes of Willie Hamilton used to get mocked or laughed at on TV and in the papers for having the then considered outlandish opinion that these hereditary uber-privileged people were not in fact King or Queen Emperors but were in fact human beings like the rest of us. It never crossed the minds of the vast majority of the people of the countries that make up the UK then that they were anything other that subjects of these people. It never occurred that they themselves as a group were sovereign. These ancestors of ruthless medieval warlords, those able to draw the biggest advantage from exploiting the lands and people of that time, had, and still has, in their minds, a right to rule them.

Whilst many of the sorrows that blight 21st century life in the UK could be ended or minimised with targeted public sector financial investment, money that apparently doesn’t exist, state occasions and jingoistic ceremonies involving expenditure of fortunes in public money, and magic priceless hats (sometimes the magic hat even gets its own Daimler journey) pass without the bat of the public eyelid.

I don’t get it. Just like I don’t get how many Scots believe that a constitutional arrangement which involves another country governing and holding all the key powers over your own country is normal. It most certainly isn’t.

Scotland’s future is yours

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Oh for those heady vibrant days. The R-word (Referendum) hadn’t yet become the R-word, September 2014 was getting closer, and daily, sometimes hourly, inspiration arrived in the form of humour, art, music, visionary prose, film clips, oration, debates, the discussions of happy determined small gatherings, large demonstrations, impromptu song, dance,poetry, podcasts, a cross section of Scottish society engaged in the celebration of hope, of seeing their future in a different light, of something different, something better.

The likes of the National Collective, Women for Independence, the Radical Independence Campaign, the Common Weal, Lesley Riddoch, Derek Bateman, the late Ian Bell, Iain MacWhirter, Robin McAlpine, Gerry Hassan, Alan Bissett, Elaine C Smith, the speeches and stage oratory of David Hayman, words that made the hair on the back of your neck stand up and gave you a lump In your throat, and much much more.

The film’Scotland Yet’, Bissett’s. ‘Vote Britain, Riddoch’s Nordic Horizons and her book ‘ Blossom’, Business For Scotland and Wings debunking the propaganda guff, the insights into innovative Scottish renewable energy technology, the consideration of Co-operative investment banks designed to promote new businesses and economic growth, not short term profit, conversations on the development of a written constitution for Scotland, enshrining the rights of citizens, the prospects of designing and supporting first class cradle to grave public services, the idea of real local democracy, activists and advocates for a progressive independent Scotland criss-crossing the country meeting people in Scout Halls, Church halls, the back rooms of pubs, the queue in the butchers, and any damn place where more than two people could get the gither.

A common shared vision, very wide in its interpretation, but shared nevertheless, of a better Scotland, a confident Scotland, a Scotland which makes its own decisions about its future direction.

Like a light switch suddenly being turned on, the bulb burning brighter every day. Why didn’t we see it this way before said some?

That is where we need to go, this is what we need to build, this and clear, easily communicated responses to the practical questions, on issues like currency and oil, and debunking the red herrings, without getting bogged down and diverted into the how much will a first class stamp cost in an independent Scotland negativity.

We must present the contrast between the vision of what an independent Scotland can undoubtedly be against the reality of what a post-Brexit UK most probably will be as a credible and compelling case for self-determination.

We, as members of a renewed diverse grassroots Yes Campaign, including the political party and the non politically affiliated have the wit, the abilities,the skills, the determination and the motivation to do this together.

Independence in the rest of the world is the norm. In the unnatural situation Scotland finds itself in as a subservient ‘partner’ governed by a larger neighbour self-government needs to become the norm in the consciousness of the majority.

No one will do this work for us, but it is an imperative that we do it, and get started now. We need to be ready when the date is announced for the ballot which will open the door to a prosperous future for our children and theirs.

This lot at Westminster and those they serve, the British state, currently have no clue where they are ultimately going, no real idea why they are doing so, no concept of a requirement to consult or seek advice from anyone who may suffer as a consequence of their actions, and an intention to just arrogantly breenge in to a brick wall at one hundred miles an hour, but they’ll have done so whilst showing the bulldog spirit, and that is all that matters. Madness.

It’s time to get organised again. It’s time to make Scotland’s future yours, not Westminster’s.

He’s off again

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Events are not boding well this week for Scotland.

Following the announcement that David Mundell, who has been standing in the corner of a room, somewhere in the borders, with a bucket on his head channeling a standard lamp for the last week whilst the media has been pretending to search everywhere for him to ask him about the very clear inconsistencies that have come to light in his comments about Brexit, and specifically the existence of any government produced analytical reports about Brexit, is off on yet another foreign jolly, the planets are lining up all wrong.

The Secretary of State Against Scotland, London’s representative in one of the last remaining colonies (for it is becoming more apparent that this is what we are) is off for a five day outing to eastern climes, Japan and Hong Kong.

Like Scotsmen Jardine and Matheson before him, but without the extensive drug-dealing network filling the Empire’s coffers, Mundell will extoll the virtues of such goods as the Great British Tea Cake, Old Britannia whisky, tartans of the Home Counties, and Irn Red, White and Blue to conference rooms full of bewildered Chinese and Japanese government officials and business people, all wondering who this fading gingery haired soor-pickle-faced geezer is, and why he’s making a speech about Scotland and Brexit powers being retained in London, or at the growing by the day Scotland Office, from several thousand miles away from Scotland or London.

That’s his form, we’ve seen it before in Myanmar and South America. He’s not there just for the canapés. If there’s controversial news to deliver do it from as far away as you can get away with, and in a week when it’s been made clear in the media that we are about to be subjected to a very hard sell campaign on the ‘benefits and opportunities’ of Brexit from the robotic leader (in name only) of the British government and her hardline right-wing cabal of Johnson, Gove, Davis, the ever creepy Redwood and Lord Snooty, the heat is about to be turned up on the divorcing Johnny Foreigner plan.

Watch that space.

The illusion of consultation

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Ah those fine, and ever increasing in number, people at the Scotland Office are fairly keeping themselves busy at the moment. A hectic time for the British government in Scotland indeed. It’s not easy building the framework for an alternative government covertly whilst undermining a legitimate one at the same time.

The New Town in Edinburgh and parts of Leith are a hive of activity as prospective employees with the right credentials queue up, straightening their old school ties on the way in, to be interviewed for a post in the modern day East Albia Company.

Lookouts posted at the various entrances to the Scotland Office have been heard to shout, amidst a fit of coughs ‘Code Red’ at nearby suspicious looking parked furniture removal vans every time a news reporter is in the vicinity, to signify that the team of removalists within should stay in the vehicle for the moment, and not carry brand spanking new tax-payer funded office furniture into the building until the coast is clear. A ‘ Code Blue ‘ signal apparently means it’s okay you can come out, they are from the BBC.

The latest development though in the great propaganda war really takes the Great British Tea Cake.

The mythical ‘ Brexit papers’ as important as the Domesday Book, and as legendary as the Ark of the Covenant and any biography written by David Torrance (PPB, ERSE) which involves him actually knowing,or consulting, the person he is writing about, are causing no end of consternation.

I’m actually starting to think that the British government’s representative in Scotland,Viceroy Fluffmeister Mundell, must surely be calling an early morning teleconference on a daily basis with his ever increasing senior staff to determine what jolly wheeze they can pull today to rip the piss out of the concept of devolution and the Holyrood parliament.

Having bobbed and weaved for months over the very existence of any Brexit analysis papers, Mundell, who has obviously taken Gary Oldman’s performance as Churchill to heart and headed for an underground bunker surrounded by sandbags, to avoid interviews now that he has been rumbled, is at it again.

Members of the Scottish parliament were advised this week that the aforementioned confidential papers, which now seem to exist, papers highlighting the economic disaster Brexit will be for Scotland and the rest of the current U.K (papers which postulate worse financial forecasts than the Scottish government’s analysis) would be available for them to peruse in a confidential reading room at the very busy Scotland Office.

This they could do under strict supervision, with at least one of Mundell’s black polo-necked scar-faced henchman in the room beside them at all times, to ensure there was no possibility of pockelling. Presumably the real purpose of this was to make sure that none of the MSP’s managed to smuggle any of the damning report out, thus warning the general population of the disaster that’s shortly to happen, before it happens.

As well as having to wend their way through piles of large cardboard boxes, plastic wrapped desks and office chairs, miles of IT cables and milling queues of disorderly privately educated job applicants, the representatives of Scotland’s people were advised that they needed to make appointments to see the documents and would have limited blocks of time in which to do so.

It’s hard to take in the detail of a complex economic analysis report in five and a half minute chunks but I’m sure they all had a good shot at trying, even with the added challenge of half of the information missing and only the even numbered pages available for examination.But hey, London can tick the box now, we’ve been consulted.

Folks, it’s getting to be well beyond the joke.The disrespect and outright contempt which the British state is displaying towards Scotland’s democratically elected parliament is palpable. They are coming for it. We need to convince our country folk that this cannot happen.

Scotland will be oh so much better off in every possible way when it returns to its rightful independent state.

The Secretary of State for Spin

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Politics has always been known for giving a home to those of a self-serving, often self-righteous nature, seeking an occupation which involves the ability to project conviction, integrity and a sense that all will be well, whilst deploying the very maximum amount of bombast, spin and hot air that can be gotten away with, to an audience who generally aren’t interested in politics, but are influenced by headlines.

The current crop of British state politicians are no different. In fact they regularly provide very good examples that prove the point.

It’s a pity therefore that the institutionalised propaganda grip that Britain has on its news and current affairs media, and its subsidiary elements in Scotland, couldn’t be loosened just enough to allow news reporters of an investigate nature the space to generate a few refreshing balanced headlines by turning their attentions in the other direction, away from simply protecting the status quo, asking difficult questions of those that govern Scotland from England, and their local representatives based in Scotland.

For example, in the last week yet another meeting has taken place between representatives of the devolved limited powers Scottish Government and Westminster’s ruling power.

This was one of a now long line of meetings to discuss the implications of the London government’s decision (following the people of England and Wales voting marginally in a non-binding referendum to leave the European Union) to take Scotland, whose people voted overwhelmingly to remain in the European Union, with them against their democratic will,out of the world’s largest free trading bloc.

To further compound this clear and demonstrable disrespectful and undemocratic act towards the people of Scotland London intends, whilst removing Scotland from the European Union, to also flout the devolution settlement, where the accepted ordinance is that all powers pertaining to the devolved nation,unless specifically reserved, should be considered as devolved. This they will do by insisting that governance of all regulatory powers returning from the EU over areas like fishing, agriculture and the environment will be from Westminster.

We shouldn’t worry unduly about this however, they tell us, as once this feat has been achieved, London, at their leisure, and in their benevolence, will make further decisions about whether they feel all, part, or none of these returned powers should then be devolved on to their ‘enduring partners’.

We all know the British state’s record on keeping promises, apart from where that promise is a threat, so we shouldn’t hold our breath awaiting, as London’s local agent, the Secretary of State Against Scotland, describes it, a ‘bonanza’ of devolved returned powers.

Anyway, with the clock ticking towards Brexit, and following twenty months where the ruling powers in London have simply ignored any, and all attempts by Scotland’s devolved government to be heard, or have any influence on what should be its own powers, treating them essentially like they’d just farted, this latest meeting, where London is looking to smooth the way for its Great British Repeal Bill, which allows Westminster to hoover up all returned powers from Brussels, resulted, bizarrely, in two alternative outcomes.

When asked by the waiting media how it had all went, in the room, behind closed doors, when the cards were on the table, the UK’s man in Scotland, Viceroy David Mundell, who had torn himself away from picking office furniture for his new alternative government office to attend the meeting, was positively bubbly, promulgating the message that broadly the Scottish Government had espoused the London view.

Mundell was seen to blush with excitement, marvelling at this negotiating coup, this work of diplomatic genius. He was heard to orate forth thus ‘We’re all on the right page, we’re singing from the same sector analysis report, we’re a united front, we have general agreement about the form and process of our masterful and orderly withdrawal from the European Union. After all, we’re all British. We’ll play bowls together at Plymouth whilst the French and Spanish fleets await our brave Jack Tars, and the kilties, don’t forget the kilties if there is any danger, sailing out to blow them right out of the channel. Huzzah Huzzah!

Mike Russell, the Scottish government minister tasked with the thankless job of trying to reduce the possibly catastrophic impact of Brexit on Scotland by somehow herding a load of varyingly degree-ed upper class right-wing cats and their toadying acolytes into some sort of sensible discussions and strategies, when sought out by the same media pack eager to garner his views on the outcome of the meeting, had this to say ‘Pish’.

I think it’s time somebody somewhere started asking David Mundell a harder question than what’s your favourite place to visit abroad, don’t you?

Looking for a trap-door

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We all know that moment, we’ve aw been there. You are sitting in a school class, or perhaps at a dinner table wae a group of yer partner’s work colleagues, or any one of a hundred and one other scenarios, tuned in tae your own wee world, when suddenly the spotlight comes upon you. Everybody is looking at ye expectantly, awaiting your answer to the question you haven’t heard, after a few moments of awkwardness and a big riddy, your response results in roars of laughter from your audience, and indignation from the asker of the question, when you say “The Treaty of Versailles” instead of “photosynthesis” or ” Yes please, some more of that nice red would be good” when the right answer was ” one sugar thanks”.Aye we’ve aw been there.

Yesterday, at First Minister’s Questions in the Scottish Parliament, Branch Secretary of the ever moving target policies British Labour Party did all of this to himself, without the need of a question he didn’t hear.

Brian Taylor, in his state broadcaster piece on the events that unfolded as Tricky Dicky Leonard, fixer of industrial disputes he was never involved in, took to his feet and then effectively shot himself in one of them, suggests that we shouldn’t make too much of this, as Leonard will have better days. However having watched his performance he could hardly have had a worse day if a passing small stray dug had wandered into the parliament chamber, stood in front of him with its head turned slightly to look at him curiously, before trotting up, assuming the position, and passing water down his right trooser leg.

The merry band of synthetic-people-of-the-people behind him could be seen visibly cringing as Leonard, seemingly incapable of public speaking without referring to notes every fifteen seconds, rambled on. In fact it was so bad at one point that Johann Lamont’s usual sour parliamentary inside-out-face very nearly involuntarily righted itself.

His attempt to pull up First Minister Nicola Sturgeon on the Scottish Government’s budget was like being savaged by a guppy. His command of the detail of both the actual budget and the version his party had hastily scribbled in the margins of an old Daily Record, after branch Labour’s finance spokesman James Kelly’s similarly cringeworthy embarrassing gaffe admitting that they didn’t have a tax plan, in Holyrood the other week, was very limited, indeed weak.

It’s hard to know whether to laugh or cringe at this performance. In a parliament chamber that some time soon will be the forum for the serious business of serving the sovereign will of the people of an independent Scotland the evidence of such lack of preparation, such ineptitude, only demonstrates the contempt with which the mainstream British nationalist political parties hold the idea of a government for Scotland. Their eye is on another place. Their lead is from another place. Their loyalty is to another place.

Talking of eyes on another place Colonel Davidson, mad keen tae get down there tae Westminster tae help out with the renovation, with a scraper in her hand (if Gary Oldman can get away wae looking like his grandfaither it’ll be a skoosh for her to disguise herself as Nicholas Soames) as usual is worthy of the recipient of the stunning comment of the day award.

The tankster asserts that the Scottish Government budget plan to marginally increase the taxes of those in the country who have a bob or two will deter investment in Scotland, and stall growth. The fiction that there will be a mad rush for Carlisle as business people, ‘wealth-creators’ and entrepreneurs struggle to cope with the shooge new burden had me coughing up my dinner.This from a politician whose party (and their own reports support this)is about to send all signatory nations to the great and glorious partnership of the UK smack bang into a potential economic nuclear winter. At least the blown up particles coming down like snow will be red, white and blue. Huzzah!

Scotland will do so much better, and will be served by capable individuals committed to the betterment of the lives of its people, once it returns to its rightful independent state. Of that there can be no doubt.