A proud European nation for 1000 years – ‘Game on’ for Salmond

So here we go again.

Another two, three or more years of any stability blighted by the nationalist obsession with separating Scotland from the rest of Britain, the charge led as always not by any intellectual crėme de la crėme of the independence movement but by the blundering schemers and bullies of the SNP.

In classic nationalist fashion they already seem to have some fundraiser underway – a million pounds has been mentioned. Why not? It’s a nice round number and after all the late Yes movement sought to get a million signatures for indy in 2014. Anyone hear how that went? More recently, of course, they’ve had their famous ‘National Survey’ that supposedly received two million responses. Anyone hear how that went? They seem to like round numbers, although the round numbers they’ll have to explain away if it gets anywhere near a vote are the billions in fiscal transfer the Scottish government gets every year from the UK Treasury. That’s posh for subsidy by the way.

Still, what do facts matter in the SNP’s shadowy world of brushes with the truth? Check, as if you needed a reminder, ‘Once in a lifetime,’ the glib promise perpetrated by Nicola Sturgeon in 2014.

Of course, Nicola wasn’t the only politician to use the once in a lifetime/generation lie, although to hark back to my first paragraph above I see her more as a schemer than a bully. For that mantle, step forward Salmond, A.

Yesterday’s man, the old dinosaur who couldn’t retire gracefully, was all over the media like a rash in the hours after Sturgeon’s press conference (Sky News had a story that along with other un-named senior SNP members, he’d pushed the first minister into another referendum). I don’t know if he had a slot on Russia Today but I’m sure they covered the news … sympathetically. Someone pointed out that in the commons, doing his Mr Angry act, he was already wearing a Yes badge.

Which brings me to the words he was heard also using yesterday, that Scotland has been ‘a proud European nation for a thousand years.’

It’s the sort of language he used in 2014 with his talk of ‘the sovereign will of the Scottish people’ and when he quoted Nehru’s ‘soul of a nation, long suppressed’ approvingly, as if Scotland were a single living entity. It’s not exactly looking to the future and always comes with the hectoring tone of his delivery.

Ironically, for a man supposedly so aware of history, a proud European nation for a thousand years is also historically inaccurate. The concept of a nation in a modern sense was unknown in 1017 (to be precise). And I can’t believe that many inhabitants of Scotland at the time had a notion of it as European. It’s almost as if the former first minister sees some sort of proto-EU of the time in which Scotland played a full part.

Still, that’s the way he speaks. No doubt we’ll be getting a lot more of it over the next few years and no doubt it’ll appeal to a minority of backward-looking Scots.

Of course, as well as the blustering faux patriotism, Alex is also a bit of a gambler, hence the ‘Game on’ in the title of this post. It’s a phrase he used a few weeks ago when he detected a ‘surge’ for separation in the opinion polls. Gamblers, as bookies well know, are long-term losers.

Meantime, my thanks to the online friend who used ‘Quebec2’ yesterday to give me some comfort in the wake of Nicola’s press conference. It was an odd echo for me because, for reasons I explained in the very first post on this blog, its URL is mercinon, an oblique reference to that province of Canada.

Quebec also had two referendums on its separation from Canada, hence ‘Quebec2.’ It should be an unsettling thought for the great gambler but doubtless it won’t show, at least if and until his second ‘day after.’ I shall return to the dreadful warning, for the separatists, of Quebec and its two failed referendums in a future post.

The morning after the night before – Round One

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6 Responses to A proud European nation for 1000 years – ‘Game on’ for Salmond

  1. Gerry says:

    Hi

    A few observations.

    With minimal amendments, much of the post could be reflect Brexit? For example,

    ‘stability blighted by the nationalist obsession with separating Scotland from the rest of Britain’ could read ‘stability blighted by the Tory obsession with separating UK from the rest of Europe’.

    Here’s another –

    ‘the charge led as always not by any intellectual crėme de la crėme of the Europhobe movement but by the blundering schemers and bullies of the Conservatives.’

    and so on.

    Posts would be of more value if there were less derogatory statements and name-calling. This tactic is generally accepted as being detrimental to reasoned debate.

    For the record – after careful consideration and without doubt, I voted to remain part of the UK in indyref1. I will carefully consider again. Brexit was the instigator of indyref2. Blame for indyref2 lies with the Conservative government and its internal politics and, for many conservatives (Tory and UKIP), an intense dislike of EU, associated organisations and legislation.

    Gerry

    Like

    • Roger White says:

      Thanks for your comments. You (perhaps) make a wrong assumption about my views on Brexit. Like you I voted Remain but in respect of Scottish separation I don’t believe adding one huge uncertainty to another is helpful. You say Brexit was the instigator of indyref2. Hmm, yes, maybe the immediate trigger but the SNP in particular would use any grievance to promote separation, so it’s certainly not the root cause (see clause 1 of the SNP constitution!). As for derogatory statements etc, yes I accept my post is a bit of a polemic. Sometimes emotions and feelings have to show through. If Salmond and Sturgeon hadn’t told the plain lie of ‘once in a generation’ I might have been more conciliatory. At least in mitigation I could point to many posts in this blog where I take precisely the approach you urge – analysis of electoral statistics, future of oil industry etc. But always with an edge. It’s why I blog. Thanks again.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Sam Duncan says:

    I still say they’re bluffing. They expect the PM to refuse them their referendum, so they can start whining about Westminster Tory oppression again. Even the fundraising is part of the bluff. What better way to create resentment than to part people from their cash?

    Why do I think this? Simple. Reality is beginning to dawn on them. It’s been quite clear for years that none of them understands the EU, what it is, or how it works (which should be no surprise, since very few politicans do; the cynical among us would suggest that this is by design). There are many, many, indicators of this ignorance which we needn’t go into here, but the operative one at the moment is that it’s already too late to “keep” Scotland in. And they, proud Europeans that they are, hadn’t noticed until now.

    Once Article 50 is invoked, the UK, all of it, is leaving. There are no brakes on the process. If the SNP wanted to prevent part of it from doing so, it needed to win a referendum before the end of this month. Otherwise, as the Commission reminded us yesterday, within hours of Sturgeon’s announcement, a new Scottish state would have to apply, like anyone else, under Article 49, accept the aquis in its entirety without any of the UK’s derogations, and get to the back of the queue. This was an arguable point in 2014 since there was no precedent, but once the UK starts the withdrawal process, it’s quite clear. Scotland is part of a state that has served notice of intent to leave, a notice which cannot be withdrawn. Even if it separates afterwards, the notice has still been served. (Let’s not forget, by the way, that Salmond put Sturgeon in the uncomfortable position of standing in front of the Parliament to admit that the “solid legal advice” they’d been touting about membership 3-5 years ago throughout the first 18 months of the last campaign didn’t, in fact, exist. At all. The SNP are, as determined by a court of law and admitted by their own leader before the Holyrood Parliament, a bunch of liars.)

    So this was what the American footballists call a “Hail Mary pass”. (Which, when you come to think of it, fits with Salmond’s gambling character. The story that he pushed Sturgeon into it against her better judgement rings very true.) It was announced on the day that it was widely rumoured the PM would invoke A50, in the hope of preventing her from doing so. It looks like the rumours were false, and it will still go ahead “in late March”, as announced months ago. So what’s left is, as I say, the hope that the PM, wanting to avoid distractions during the negotiation period, will refuse the request, or, failing that, a last-ditch attempt to persuade the Scottish electorate that spending about a decade outside both the UK and EU, with a hastily cobbled-together currency and no trade agreements, will be worth it in order to get a worse deal from the latter than the one the UK as a whole rejected back in June.

    Assuming there’s still an EU to join by then. By the looks of what’s going on in France right now, I wouldn’t bet on that, Alec.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Roger White says:

      Thanks for this (and your various other comments too). I like the bluffing thought. You can already see how the demands and the grievances are being cranked up only a day after her Bute House event. They are of course past masters at that sort of politics.

      Like

  3. Salmond said on tv that the u.k now had no friends, this coming from a bufoon who is happy to upset scotlands 2 largest exporting countries u.k and usa with a combined total of over 70% of scotlands exports.

    Like

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