If the Union offends thee…

ian_blackfordAlong with Mike Russell, Ian Blackford is emerging as one of the heroes of Scotland’s independence movement. Unquestionably, this is because both these individuals are unafraid to reflect in their rhetoric some of the indignation and anger felt by people across Scotland and beyond.

What may seem strange to some is the extent to which the British establishment seems oblivious to and/or disdainful of this outrage. The British political elite appears genuinely incapable of appreciating how its behaviour is viewed in Scotland. Either that, or they simply don’t care. Or maybe there is some awareness, but it is countered by powerful denial. I suspect there is an element of all of these at work.

There are certainly those in the British political parties who simply cannot understand why anybody would challenge the authority of the British state or question the efficacy and desirability of British governance. To them, the British ruling class is a natural phenomenon, much like the winds and the tides. They take for granted the British ‘right to rule’ just as they do the air that they breathe. when Ian Blackford and Mike Russell talk about the deficiencies and failings and offences of the British state, they might as well be speaking the Gaelic for all the British understand of what they say.

Some, no doubt, are just as aware of these deficiencies, failings and offences as Blackford and Russell and the rest. But, from the arrogant and perverse perspective of British exceptionalism, getting away with these things is a mark of superiority. They not only don’t care about the harm they do, they revel in it. Gross abuse of power and abysmal incompetence are, like the elaborate raiment and ornate headgear sported by aristocracy, the ostentation which signifies status.

Then there are those who simply blank out the discomfiting reality. We see all to clearly in aspects of the Brexit fiasco the astounding capacity for denial that exists within the ranks of the British political elite. If they are capable of deluding themselves about how that whole bourach is going, it’s easy to see how David Mundell might have convinced himself that he really does speak for Scotland and that we all respect and admire him just as we love and adore Ruth Davidson.

What this all adds up to is a British state which is sick to its core. Chronically sick. Terminally sick. From Scotland’s perspective, ending the Union will be like amputating a diseased limb.


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9 thoughts on “If the Union offends thee…

  1. “I suspect there is an element of all of these at work.” I’d agree with that totally. But I do believe there is a 4th element. They are relying on the usual british attitude to politics – soporific and not much interested. Many of the british, be they English or Scots, just can’t be bothered with ‘boring politics’ till the dirty deeds are done and they suddenly find their homes are falling in fracking holes, we’re feeling little earthquakes under our feet or the counter assistant in the chemist asks for payment for their prescriptions. Many in Scotland are just TOO AMBIVALENT until its too late. The Conservative Labour Unionist Pary knows this, and exploits it – and hopes to achieve it’s goal using these people. A sad indictment of much of our population who ‘just can’t be… uhh.. bothered’… And the truth is, WE’LL ALL PAY for their ambivalence.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Key insight Peter “in the British political parties who simply cannot understand why anybody would challenge the authority of the British state or question the efficacy and desirability of British governance. To them, the British ruling class is a natural phenomenon, much like the winds and the tides. They take for granted the British ‘right to rule’ just as they do the air that they breathe.”

    Which also accounts for ” the usual british attitude to politics – soporific and not much interested” which kate remarks on above

    Liked by 2 people

  3. The UK Government knows perfectly well that around 40% of Scots are so wedded to the idea of ‘Great Britain’ that they will support the Union no matter how outrageiosly Westminster acts. They are banking on inertia among the rest of us to let them get away with it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The kind of British Nationalism to which you refer is not as rife in Scotland as you seem to imagine. If it were, thee British parties would still control Holyrood; and we wouldn’t have had a referendum in 2014, far less achieve a 45% Yes vote. A better estimate of the ‘Union At Any Cost’ element might be gained by looking at support for what the ‘party’ which represents them. Ruth Davidson is is crowned the Queen of Britnats. Support for her ‘party’ doesn’t reach much above 25%.

      Liked by 1 person

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