2007 - 2021

News from Nowhere

151304The deluge of sudden, knee-jerk coverage of Scottish politics has been huge this week. Some of it great, some of it not so great. Here’s some.

Andrew Tickell (still at The Times) talks of Theresa May wincing her way through high office, “immunised by the mediocrity of her opponents” (ouch). He writes: “Mrs May ruled out a second independence referendum on Nicola Sturgeon’s timetable, with the strained roboticism that has become her hallmark. “Now is not the time,” she said. When pressed, the prime minister clung to her soundbite like a drowning man to flotsam”. More at “Mutant Brexit has the power to transmogrify”.

Joyce McMillan at The Scotsman ponders that Nicola Sturgeon:  “must be delighted by the response she received yesterday from Theresa May and David Mundell; which not only relieves her of the need to fight a furious and probably losing referendum campaign any time soon, but makes the Westminster government look high-handed and undemocratic, and condemns Theresa May to conduct the entire Brexit negotiation, from start to finish, with the threat of losing a large chunk of her kingdom still looming over her shoulder.”

While over at CapX a Marian L Tupy writes of the (apparently obvious) parallels with Scotland and Slovakia (‘What Scotland can learn from the Velvet Divorce’):

“While the Scots resent their much bigger neighbour in the south, they are heavily reliant on English subsidies, which are bound to grow larger as Scottish oil becomes scarcer and falls in price due to the fracking revolution in the United States. It is that subsidy that allows Holyrood to maintain a much more socialist economic model than would be the case if Scotland had to fend for itself. The English are putting up with Scottish dependence and periodic hissy fits because of a deep emotional commitment to the Union by a succession of British leaders.”

Some of this is a sort of anthropological mistake. It’s people who don’t really know what they are talking about writing on a subject they have to sound confident on. Others, such as Fraser Nelson, has no such excuse. He writes:

“Nicola Sturgeon, meanwhile, is heading into the second act of her staged drama: l’Ecosse, c’est moi: “my ideas are the Will of the Scottish People, to defy me is to defy the whole of Scotland” etc. This rather creepy mentality is one of the darker aspects of nationalism. By calling a new referendum the SNP is acting in defiance of the will of the Scottish people.”

This sort of aversion to reality is growing as the unionist bloc realise that their attempts to suppress or delegitimise Scottish democracy has completely failed, and they’re going to have to do it all over again. there’s quite a lot of uncontained British nationalist anger flying about.

After George Monbiot (‘Britain is politically dead from the neck down’) and Suzanne Moore chipped-in at The Gruniad, along came Simon Jenkins with a less complimentary take on things:

“The issue is not whether a Scottish break with England makes money or sense, or is even comprehensible. The issue is whether the people of Scotland want it. Next week, the Edinburgh parliament is expected to articulate that want. In a democracy, if a dissident province wants partition from a dominant neighbour, that should be its decision, not the neighbour’s.”

A ‘dissident province’. Oh well, if one thing has changed fundamentally from 2014 it is, as the good people of Bognor Regis shouted at us on Question Time, that the Love Bombing isn’t really a goer any more. As talk of ‘our sacred union’ becomes a new (odd) soundbite, the language of partnership has been abandoned.  As Jenkins explains gently: “One day there must be a new constitutional relationship between London and Edinburgh. It will almost certainly be one that, at very least, removes Scotland from Westminster’s parliament and budget.”

Is that clear enough?

Scotland isn’t one of a ‘family of nations’ it’s a ledger item on a budget spreadsheet. And, if we were ever stupid enough to believe that we had a place in the Motherfucker of all Parliaments (™), we should be disabused of that notion. It’s Westminster’s parliament, not ours. The message seems to be, ‘You certainly can’t leave, but you’re not welcome either.’

Okay, we’ve got the memo.

We are a dissident province and citizens of nowhere. Bella is the News from Nowhere. Let’s begin on that basis. You can support us here.

Comments (15)

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  1. bringiton says:

    We are so lucky to have these generous Tories at Westminster continuing to give us handouts.
    That will be right!

  2. Valerie says:

    I find it astonishing now, with the daily barrage of failing public services in the south, that they STILL believe they suffer, so we can be subsidised.

    Not once, have I seen, even in pieces that are reasonably neutral, the writer point out that the Scottish gov’t has a very different set of spending priorities. Sure, they might allege we are subsidy junkies living off their largesse, but they make NO effort to understand.

    As I’m apt to point out – this is a UK govt that penalise people, like elderly and disabled, for having an extra bedroom, and you think they subsidise Scotland?

    I don’t think the Britnat anger has ever gone away, since 2014, because this uppity jock, grievance chimp thing infuriates them. The waves of bile just from weekly QT, have been going for at least a year, whenever Scotland is even mentioned. It’s incredibly nauseating, and Joanna Cherry was an absolute star last night, calling it out, when a member of the audience sneered, so what currency will you use, the groat?

    Who are these ordinary, working class people to sneer and direct this kind of vitriol?

    1. Josef O Luain says:

      The otherwise admirable, Joanna Cherry, should never have been in a position whereby one of your “ordinary, working class people” was able to ask such a question of her.

      To say that she was “flustered” by the inevitable currency-question, is to be very kind indeed.

      Until answered satisfactorily, the ‘C’ question has the potential to disarm every argument for Scottish independence that we care to put to Unionist voters, immaterial of class.

      And yes, Joanna Cherry is a ‘star’, no doubt about that.

      1. Valerie says:

        I didn’t see Joanna ‘flustered’. She made the point that Scottish people were watching, and being nasty wasn’t the smartest thing, just as she would never sneer at the audience.

        She then went on to say currency was being discussed, and to watch this space.

        Alex Salmond has made some lengthy comment on currency today, so it is being discussed. Salmond made the error, which he admits, of presenting an argument on currency union in 2014, which the Union could just continue to veto. He underestimated the vitriol of our neighbours.

      2. Wul says:

        I don’t think Joanna Cherry was flustered.

        I think she was simply searching for a verbal response that didn’t include all the swear words that were running through her head.

  3. Adam says:

    Very true – inevitable when the London media starts paying attention to Scotland for a change! BTW if anyone wants a laugh (admittedly from the other side) I recommend this funny piece on Sturgeon insisting that England is referred to as ‘Mordor’ in all future SNP publications http://www.thesparkmagazine.co.uk/uk/nicola-sturgeon-insists-england-referred-to-as-‘mordor’-in-all-snp-publications/

  4. Redgauntlet says:

    Whatever happens, we’ve still got the best bands…by far….

    The Jesus and Mary Chain at the Riviera in Madrid on April 30th…..oh superb!

    Take me to the dark lands!!!
    Oh I get down on my knees!!!
    Oh I feel like I am dying!!!!
    Oh take me to the dark lands!!!

    We’re so much cooler than the English….everybody knows it, and it wouldn’t be hard. Let’s face facts….

    Glasgow bands, fckin unbelievable… they are what Scottish fitba used to be: our ambassadors abroad. Everybody loves Glasgow bands….


  5. Tony Rozga says:

    Good read, and it shows how power is the issue. The question time audience the other night clearly couldn’t stomach the idea of scotland exercising power and voting for independence. However, as one of the audience pointed out, he would like a say on scotland, referring to the opportunity for voting scotland out of the union. This was met with enthusiastic applause. So it just shows us that it has nothing to do with our precious union or better together, it is to do with who makes the decision that the union will cease, the Tory, labour unionist group just can’t comprehend scotland having the power to make that decision.

    1. c rober says:

      So why then have our lions not offered the union to a UK referendum , is it fear that the wealthy whom know their income would prevent it?

      Or is it that the SNP really do fear indy being removed from the hands of the Scots , into those more inclined to ensure it ? Given the brexit ref outcome , and the rise of the nationalist RIGHT in England , then I think I may have answered my own question.

      The vitriol of the commenters on any of the Brit Nat press , the Daily Heil , Sexpress , and Murdoch stream , seems to confirm that the English are unable to see where the true problem lies – so is it simply due to the media being their information stream? Or is there a far darker , deeper nationalism fed on shoulder chips and brown sauce?

      History proves that the State of England is due to the Tories , but the average WASP in England , its majority , chooses to have the blame hound for the convenience of not accepting they could be wrong. Its ostrich syndrome , much like that of no voters in Scotland , of Jockholm syndrome.

      Its the EU , its Sponging Scotland , its the immigrants.

      But its never the captains of the ship , and while those commentors are happy to oblige the true enemy , the wealthy and those that enable them every election to be the masters for their own masters , it proves democracy is a sham – be it socialist milyoonaires , or capitalist bilyoonaires supplying the politics within the press that enslaves them.

      Today the uk media is controlled by basically 3 people , over 50 percent of papers , and with Murdoch also owning the TV streams , then there is the BBC – controlled by what ever GOVT is in power at the time…. and for a while afterwards.

      Yet Murdoch has been allowed to get this power , as has the owners of other press and media , its been enabled by the politicians to be this way , engineered as some symbiosis – back scratch , washed hand. Labour also is complacent in this , prior to 97 and up to Brown being Pm

      This is why imo , that Holyrood should be getting its LEGAL teeth out , noting that media thus print and TV is still a reserved matter , but Scots law isnt – so perhaps there should be SOME serious thought given to using the devolved powers to remove the reserved ones?

      Thinking out of the box here is whats needed done now , punishing the media for “sources say” , for repeating lies like Spanish veto and so on..before those 80 WM soldiers get into Pacific Quay

      The onus of fair reporting has never worked for the likes of self regulation and the PCOS , and as we seen with the phone hacking scandal , and how deep it went right to no10 , then the eventual results , then Scotland has no other option but to define a counter to what is in effect warfare.

      Have we seen such legislation created to fight the bilyoonaires and milyoonaire media owners since indy 1 , no. When the enablers of our masters SCREAM from their printed pulpits to get back to their day jobs , then we might as well listen – for one thing , creating the rods for their own backs.

  6. Tom Parkhill says:

    Today’s Telegraph poll shows that The Sacred Union comes a distant second to The Sacred Brexit in the eyes of most people in Britain.


    It’s like the Unionist in Northern Ireland: they think that they are more British than the British. But to the British who form the Tories core voter group, they are just Irish. And Scottish Unionists, and most of Scotland, are pretty much the same, Britain can get by without us without missing a heartbeat. I don’t think that we should feel badly about this, this voter group would also look down on people from Liverpool or Newcastle, or wherever. But we should be realistic about it.

    1. MBC says:

      Yes that was very revealing wasn’t it. However English public opinion is unlikely to influence English policy on Scotland. They have political and geo-strategic reasons for hanging on to Scotland and the sooner it is cleared of Scots the better. We have 30% of the landmass of the UK, 80% of the coastline of the UK, and 90% of the oil plus the nuclear base.

  7. e.j. churchill says:

    The MAIN plop JC left with most observers – especially disinterested a/o low information observers – is “How do you expect us to dance when we have a wooden leg?”

    When one wears their (self-proclaimed) ‘Victimhood’ as a shield, rarely is the reaction you wish & expect is the one forthcoming.

    Her non-answers were tripe and (again) demonstrated the sheer and institutional contempt SNP has for the citizenry, regardless of postal code.

    Dealing with facts-on-the-ground, UK heavily subsidises Scotland, including covering their Overdraft (fully acknowledged by SG), ergo, the Fiduciary (any UK citizen) can ask their ward, “When are you going to get a job and pay some bills, rather than live in my basement and DEMAND me to BOTH buy your clothes AND launder them because ‘people don’t respect me’ AND you have a hangnail.”

    ’tis sad


      1. john mooney says:

        Quite right MBC,just another fulminating troll espousing the usual claptrap,more to be pitied than traduced,cheers :o).

  8. frank casey says:

    The reference to ‘News from Nowhere ‘ reminds me of the definition by Morris of the Palace of Westminster’ as “The Dung Factory,”It proves just how prophetic that he could be on occasion. He was an Englishman with a humane world view. More of the same needed in these benighted times.

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