Making the case

The Scottish government is planning a drive across the country this summer to make the case for independence, but to tell the truth, the Tories have beaten them to it. Just a month ago making the case for independence looked like it was going to be a long hard slog, a slow campaign of attrition, but in the space of a couple of weeks the Conservative and Unionist party has managed to make the case for independence for us.

It was all very well answering the criticism that Scotland doesn’t get the UK governments it votes for by replying that there will be another General Election, and Scotland can have another chance at trying but failing to get a UK government that most in Scotland support. But Brexit is forever. There’s no coming back from that. Scotland voted by a large majority, by a larger margin than we voted to remain a part of the UK, to stay in the EU, yet we’re going to be taken out of it anyway. We don’t get another chance at voting on this, and the future of Scotland for decades to come will be determined by a choice supported by only a minority of its population. That’s an unsustainable democratic deficit.

Last night’s Trident vote was the stale icing on the shit-cake. The elected representatives of the rest of the UK voted by a very large margin to impose Trident on the part of the UK whose elected representatives voted almost unanimously against it.

Trident creates hundreds, no thousands, bazillions of jobs, cry the Tories and their apologists, citing a number that increases every time there’s a news report. Back in 2012 Labour’s Jackie Baillie was criticised for citing a wildly inflated figure of 11,000 jobs dependent on Trident. The true figure, revealed by a Freedom of Information request, is 520 civilian jobs.  Yet this week the Guardian claimed 13,000 Scottish jobs depend on the bombs. Who knew that nuclear weapons of mass destruction were really altruistic methods of creating job opportunities eh? When Robert Oppenheimer set off the first atomic bomb what he really said was, “I am become death, the destroyer of worlds. But I do keep a medium sized Tesco Express open in the Helensburgh area.”

I don’t know about you, but I don’t feel very safe entrusting my future and the future of my country to a bunch of innumerate eejits who don’t know the difference between a weapon of mass destruction that has the potential to evaporate the West of Scotland and a job creation scheme. Trident isn’t designed to create Scottish jobs. It’s designed to blow the planet to buggery. It just creates some work for a relatively small number of people as an accidental by-product, rather like the accidental by-product of nuclear contamination in the Firth of Clyde which it creates far more reliably. What all these politicians who scream about Trident’s job creating potential, as opposed to its people melting potential, forget is that if the government was to spend the billions it spends on Trident directly creating jobs, it would create a vastly greater number of jobs than Trident ever could. Let’s just cut out the middle-missile. It’s not bloody rocket science.

The political case for independence has been made, largely by the Unionist parties themselves. The economic case is also looking a whole lot stronger, despite some claims to the contrary from the usual suspects. Apparently it’s going to be a piece of cake for the UK to negotiate hundreds of trade deals with the rest of the world, but it’s going to be almost impossible for the rest of the UK to negotiate one with an independent Scotland that’s a part of the EU.

Ruthie, reeling from the realisation that her own party has just landed her with a Scottish independence referendum that she’s likely to lose, has taken to asserting that most of Scotland’s trade is with the rest of the UK and not with the EU. It’s unclear from the figures just how much of Scotland’s trade with the rest of the UK is promptly re-exported, because Scotland’s been systematically starved of infrastructure investment for decades and lacks the port facilities itself, but that’s by the by.

The point that Ruth doesn’t want us to consider is that if the rUK imposes trade barriers against an independent Scotland then it’s also going to face trade barriers with the rest of the European Union. The next indyref is going to be fought on the basis of Scotland remaining a member of the EU. So if the Brexiteer Tory government succeeds in its declared aim of negotiating unimpeded access for the UK to the EU single market, then an independent Scotland will also enjoy free access to the rUK’s market. And if the rUK’s government fails, and there are tarrifs on Scottish trade, there will also be tarrifs on the rUK’s trade with the EU, to which Scotland will continue to enjoy unimpeded access. That will damage the rUK’s economy immensely whereas Scotland will have other opportunities to explore and exploit. Ruth wants Scotland to remain in the UK so we can risk tying ourselves to a damaged and shrinking economy with a pound that’s plummeting faster than Ruth’s reputation and cut ourselves off from trade with the rest of the world. That’s not an attractive prospect.

There’s also the consideration that if Scotland becomes independent, many large companies which currently have their headquarters in London will be looking to relocate to an EU state in order to preserve their free access to the European single market. An independent Scotland that’s part of the EU and which shares the same landmass with the rest of the UK will be ideally placed to hoover up the jobs that the rest of the UK is losing. It will certainly create far more job opportunities in Scotland than Trident ever could.  The next indyref isn’t going to be fought on the basis of the number of jobs it’s going to cost Scotland, it’s going to be fought on the basis of the number of jobs that it’s going to bring in.

And there’s another reason that an independent Scotland will prosper outside the UK. It’s not just that Scotland is blessed with an embarrassment of natural resources, with a highly skilled population, with a world class reputation for invention and innovation. It’s not even that with our own currency we’ll join the family of nations relatively unburdened by the rUK’s national debt. The rest of the EU will have a very strong incentive to ensure that an independent Scotland, a Scotland which has become independent in order to remain a part of the EU while the rest of the UK leaves, does far better economically than the rest of the UK. What better way to illustrate to the rest of Europe the advantages of remaining within the EU, and the disadvantages of leaving.

All I’ve done here is to put together a few stray thoughts over the course of an afternoon towards making a case for Scottish independence. When we all get our heads together, when we thrash out the details, when we develop firm plans, our case for an independent Scotland will be unassailable. We’re going to be faced with a Unionist opposition which shot its bolt the last time, made promise after promise that it didn’t keep.  Its credibility lies in shreds along with the credibility of the UK in the eyes of the rest of Europe.

The Unionist diehards have been reduced to claiming that there is no appetite in Scotland for another independence referendum. What they really mean is that they have no appetite for one, because they know they’re going to lose it.

Audio version of this blog, courtesy of @lumi_1984

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0 thoughts on “Making the case

  1. Pingback: Making the case | speymouth

  2. Yup – time to start cranking up the engine – slowly but surely – until we are ready to go again.

    Every day that passes see yet another argument for staying in the UK unraveling.

    There is a growing air of inevitability…

  3. Bring it, I’ve been speaking to my customers since Friday after the EU vote, I’m getting roughly 2/3 former no voters now saying they’ll vote YES, I’m encouraging them to chat to their friends. We need to win the pensioner vote tho, they vote and do so in large numbers, Children, and grandchildren get in there, have the casual chats “but Granny, you need to vote YES for my future otherwise things look bleak for me, please don’t take a chance with my future by voting no” sort of thing

  4. The more I see the more I think that after the brexit decision, someone in Westminster looked at the figures and said “Oh shit, now we’ve escaped to the roof, now what?”.

  5. I’m hanging on to the first thing I heard you say – We can do this.
    I believed you then and I believe you now.

  6. Thanks for another immensely cheering article. In Indyref2, independence within Europe can now justifiably be presented as the option that offers stability and security, as opposed to the leap into the unknown offered by Brexit. We do need to get the message out there, though!

  7. Last night truly was the democratic deficit in action. Barring one fuzzy wee blue Tory, the entirety of the Scottish benches voted against Trident renewal. Westminster being Westminster though, yet again, drove a horse and cart through their oft repeated respect agenda and voted to renew their meal ticket to big important tables and overseas adventures. Y’know, I don’t think their idea of partnership is the same as… well, pretty much anyone else’s.

    Just an observation like.

    Regardless, I think it truly is about that time. I’m not sure just how much more respect and better togetherness the Scottish electorate can survive at the current rate.

    • Keep me right – so the MP for Orkney (Lib) and Ian Murray (Lab) voted with the SNP against Trident renewal and the only ‘Fluffy’ Con. MP voted in favour?.. but surely 58 is bigger number than 1 ..? lucky then indeed we have Fluffy with his finger on the … represent all our concerns …where one vote is clearly more important than 58.

      Of course, even if Fluffy decided to make some friends and vote with the rest of the Country, it makes no difference in the current set-up…

      • That’s the number, 58 out of 59.

        The way I look at last night? One more straw on that camels back.

        HMG and Better Together have no place to go on their record since September 19th, 2014. 100% failure to deliver on any pledge or assurance given and that takes real application to achieve.

    • i don’t know how to express how much i agree with you and Paul. Th e hypocisy of this phoney UK union makes me feel sick. Northern irish and Scots nationalists/ republicans made up their minds long ago but unionists still have a choice to make


      remain in the UK, as a subservient entity, in a 4-nation Union;

      have to always bow to the wishes of England, which continually outvotes and overpowers each of the other nations, if they dare disagree;

      continue as non-sovereign, stateless entities within the UK

      Remember:You don’t vote for the same parties as England. You have no real say in decisions made at Westminster (Trident teaches). You don’t decide on the outcome of Westminster elections. Your votes count for nothing.

      become independent/linked to the Republic of Ireland and remain in Europe;
      as two of the EU nation-states become sovereign nations of Europe within the EU’s understanding of pooled sovereignty,

      Remember: Scotland and Northern Ireland voted for full participation in the EU. They didn’t vote for any watered down option, bits and pieces of a business deal or ad hoc arrangements.

      Comment: A no-brainer, if ever there was one … for normal people

  8. I hope you are right – I couldn’t stand the disappointment of another indyref loss. Just getting over depression from the last one and determined not to get so optimistic this time. Apparently there is a councillor in Dumfries who says that if Scotland votes for Indy South Scotland should have a separate regional vote because the majority voted to stay last time. This is going to be a hard area to crack I think.

    • Cheer up, WeeChid, this time you’re on the winning side! If Paul reckons the time is right then the time is right. Just help us all work hard for independence and we’ll free our country at last.

      Thanks Paul. Another article great article.

    • Maybe this area of Dumfriesshire should become part of England and Northumbria should become part of Scotland. A fair swop which might suit the Northumbrians. Last time I was walking in Northumbria, I saw SNP posters and Saltires in windows and folk that I met were wishing that they could join us.

      • I’d take up arms and man the barricades first. Not having where I was born become part of Englandshire.

  9. Brilliant read as usual Paul but the elephant in the room is always going to be the destructive power of our Unionist press and our totally corrupt national broadcaster,
    They totally controlled the 2014 referendum without any restraints and lied and twisted at will all going unchallenged.
    What lessons has the Scottish government learnt from this and how do we combat such powerful media.

    • Absolutely correct Steve. For years I have heard complaints that the S.N.P Scottish Government don’t get their good news stories out to the wider public. And the simple reason is that the M.S.M just don’t publicise them. The only news stories that they are interested in are the ones that paint our Government in a bad light, whether there is any truth involved, or not. So when we come to campaign during Indyref2, once again it wont be the unionist parties who are our biggest enemy, it’s the media.

  10. Great article as usual Paul – I have no doubt the Beeb will pick this up and run with it 😉

    One wee thing though. When we eventually dissolve this “union of equal partners” there will no longer be a *United* kingdom for there to be a *rest* of. Simply two ex partners. Just saying.

    • Not wishing to stir things up (too much) but aren’t we still UKafter Independence, as we are marking the end of a political union. Unfortunately for the moment, at least until Elizabeth, Queen of Scots throws off her mortal coil, I think we are stuck with this but could play it to our advantage with the More traditional Yoons who might be persuaded to vote YES in IndyRef2

      • Different act of union grumpy (more accession). The union of crowns was 1603.The treaty of union which formed the united kingdom 1707 was a parliamentary union. To repeal the union of crowns would, I believe, require a separate referendum (constitutional monarchy or republic), but dissolving the treaty of union does indeed create parliamentary independence and return the country of Scotland to the status of nation state.

        • Macart, Thanks for that and I agree with your observations. From my scroll days admittedly half a century ago, I understood indeed we had Union of the Crowns in 1603 and 1707 was Union of the Parliaments. However, what I don’t understand is that the latter is now referred to as the United Kingdom, when it is the former which is indeed the United Kingdom and hence my point – we are technically the United Kingdom even after Independence.

          Thanks again, Ian

          • That’s the clever bit. The difference lies in the sovereignty and its why the second act was required. In England sovereignty rests with the crown and parliament. All power is derived from the crown in otherwords. In Scotland, thanks to the declaration of Arbroath, sovereignty rests with the people, the crown and parliament acting on their behalf. Hence her maj is Queen of Scots, not Queen of Scotland.

            It required a parliamentary union to ‘unite’ the kingdoms, not the countries. 🙂

            When we decide to dissolve the union of parliaments, her maj retains the title Queen of Scots, but the two kingdoms will no longer be united, merely share a constitutional monarchy.

          • Thanks again, Apologies for the predictive text ‘scroll’ should have read ‘school’
            Although I knew of the sovereignty differences, I think your clarification regarding the two Acts should be publicised to the wider public as indeed should the point about the Queen of Scots remaining until we as a nation say different. This might encourage the Yooners to go with us next time as surely they can’t think those rotting Houses on the Thames and its contents (excluding 56) are there for our benefit

  11. Having lived in Helensburgh I can truly state that nuclear missiles do not keep a medium sized Tesco express in business. However if it was wee twee tea rooms that would be another story. I worked at the base, a large portion of the civilian staff drive or bus in every day from quite far distances. Most of the Navy commute home down south at the weekend. Helensburgh is a place to pass through not to stay. Makes me wonder who voted for Jackie B. If one percent of trident funding was spent on converting the Rosyth dockyard into a first class container port and Faslane into a surface fleet and Scotish defence force base. Setting up some proper port facilities in the Clyde. The Economy would boom and not because of an accident at Coulport.

  12. This is really helpful. These are really strong economic arguments. As you point out, there are many ways that the economic case for independence is different from last time, and stronger. We need to keep emphasising this.

  13. Wakened by extreme lightning fast night, I looked out. I can’t decide if it was irony or portent, but it was centred over Faslane.

  14. We must smash the Unionist and MSM myths and lies.
    They cannot be allowed to lie on State Pensions this time.
    The rUK has asolid gold commitment to continue paying Scottish pensioners who earned their pension paying NI Grad and Increments into the UK Scheme.
    Those septuagenarian and octogenarian pensioners to whom Gordon Brown lied and threatened that if they voted Yes they would put their UK state pension at risk because the rUK Government would ‘punish’ them, should be assured in banner headlines and written personal confirmation from DWP that there is no risk to their pension if they vote Yes to Self Determination.
    To live in an Independent Scotland will be no different than retiring to France or Spain or a granny flat in their children’s villa in Hamilton Ontario.
    Just as significantly, the same assurance should be dragged from DWP that those still in work who have paid into the UK scheme will be entitled to that proportion of a State Pension from rUK upon reaching retirement equal to the number of years contributions paid into the scheme pre- Independence.
    If for example an individual has paid x number of years in NI contributions up until Independence Day, then rUK will be legally obliged to pay x number of years’ State Pension.
    I am convinced that we must smash these lies with clarion headlines, bill posts, and robust rebuttals/ interventions on live Unionist MSM broadcasts at every opportunity.
    I have a sense that many pensioners were bullied and terrified by Brown’s lies into voting No.
    Similarly, the lies that we were ‘too wee’ to maintain a credible Scottish Defence Force must be addressed.
    Ireland, Norway, Sweden, Holland, Belgium seem to get by. Even Finland has warded off the Russian hordes.
    There needs to be considerable work done on this.
    The size of out SDF, how it compares with that of other similar sized nations, and so on, must be rammed home, daily, in screaming headlines, to counter the ‘Alien invasion’ pish from Lord George Robertson and the English based Warmongers.
    Last time I looked, there was a net ‘saving’ of £1 billion in funding our own SDF as opposed to our share of rUK’s military and nuclear Attack Force budget.
    We have already been ‘told’; we are forbidden from using the pound. Aye, right.
    All bets are off, ye haters of Scotland ‘ProudScotsBut’.
    England is leaving the EU, and casting itself adrift into the Atlantic, selling its pots and pans and shiny beads in any port into which the fickle Trade Winds drive them.
    Rumour has it that the makers of Monopoly are substituting Bank of England notes for traditional Monopoly money as it will be cheaper than the printing costs to produce kid on money for the board game.
    The English (sic) pound is the new Funny Money on the world markets.
    No CU, Jimmy. Happy with that, thank you very much.
    Scotland Independent will have its own currency, TVM.
    I could go on, but suffice it to say that we know what the battered bruised and discredited Better Together II Project Fear is going to throw at us.
    Well, xenophobic England pulling up the drawbridge has changed all that.
    Their lies and threats will be laughed at.
    We must be well prepared this time, and somehow circumvent the nakedly aggressive, frighteningly 1984 media, particularly the BBC.
    If I have to perch naked on the rooftop of the City Chambers with a banner declaring that rUK State Pensions are safe after I Day just to get Sally Magnusson to at least give it a mention on Distorting Scotland, then so be it.
    It won’t be a pretty sight mind, but, though.

    • I agree with you, Jack. – bill posts and banners declaring as fact that rUKpensions in Scotland, along with other European countries, are safe. I found it difficult to persuade perfectly intelligent pensioners the last time round.

      Incidentally, if you persist in your rooftop plan I hope the weather is kind to you.

    • Pensions should not be an issue anyway. Contributions aren’t invested in a pension scheme like a private pension. Current payments are met from current income in the form of National Insurance contributions. As long as the Scottish Government continues collecting NI or an equivalent scheme (and inherits a proportionate share of the NI Fund) then they can pay the pensions from it the same way as the UK government does.

      One thing they aren’t going to throw at us again, with any credibility, is Labour telling us, “Vote No and help a Labour Government improve social justice throughout the UK” Even if Ed Milliband hadn’t killed that one when he told the viewing public, live on national television that he would rather see a conservative government that work with the elected representatives of Scotland, it died when Labour weren’t even able to win enough seats in rUK to form a government even if every voter in Scotland had voted for them.

      Maybe it is a laudable aim to consider a child in poverty in Liverpool or Manchester every bit as important as one in Glasgow, but it is hardly a worthy stance to say we should ignore the one in Glasgow because we are unable to help the other two.

  15. Great article and replies but where does all this go? I want Independence as much as you and will, again, for Yes!
    However, with regard to the information available to discount the previous lies, where is it? Where is the factual information? Where can I find the details that prove, without a doubt, that pensions will be safe, that we have the ability to be financially independent? That being in Europe will be right for our small country and we will not just get gobbled up as we are by Westminster?

    I want to be able to answer these questions, this time around, based on our current situation, not what was. Not just say to people…. “read the McCrone report”, as this is also historical.

    • Pauline, google the Scotsman: ‘UK MP: UK pensions would be paid after a Yes vote.’
      There is no question that rUK would be legally obliged to continue paying State Pensions to Scots residents after a Yes vote. Blair Mac Dougall and Co., were implying that RUK could somehow withhold Scots’ RP as a punishment while still paying ex Pats in Spain France, and Italy. An arrant nonsense, but supported by omission by our Dead Tree Scrolls and broadcasters, all of whom are in the pay of English and US Unionist neo liberal Masters.
      It is significant that there is still doubt in your eyes after all this time.
      The lies of the Better Together Project Fear stuck, especially Gordon Brown’s menace and threats to our frailest and most financially vulnerable citizens, pensioners in their 70’s and 80’s.
      His Clunk Fist threat might still be on YouTube. A coward, a bully, and a liar.
      What price Margaret Curran’s, the English as ‘foreigners’, now that the English xenophobes have withdrawn behind their ramparts?
      By wilfully isolating themselves from the rest of Europe, most of the Unionist Better Together Fear campaign is rendered laughable.
      Currency Union? Borders? Vote Yes and we would be sent to the back of a ten year queue ( q.v. Lord Darling of the Filthy Rich),England would stop trading with us, border guards, and losing our Brit passports.
      My point is that we must get our retaliation in first, because our Fourth Estate is Westminster’s Fifth Column Up Here and willingly prints any lies or threats submitted to it by their friends and relatives in the Unionist Cartel.

      • PS: Pauline, I fully expect our 56 (yes feckin’ 56 ! ) SNP Westminster MPs to be fully engaged in the next Independence Campaign. Few would argue that they are a formidable body of experienced politicians drawn from all walks of ‘real’ life, and would make mincemeat of the Wullie Rennies and The Queen’s Eleven Murdo Fraser, who quite deliberately do not trammel their ‘Parish Council’ brains with Johann Lamont’s ‘wee things’ like Defence, Foreign Policy, Income and Revenue, and the EU.
        (I make no apology for continue to using Murdo Fraser’s self penned ‘The Queen’s Eleven’ sobriquet in the bitter narrow Brownshirt vote catching sectarian spirit in which it was coined. Likewise, Professor WATP ‘Two Jobs’ Adam Tomkins. Nasty, sinister little men who would ferment hatred and divide to get the vote in.)
        I doubt that 100 English Labour MPs will be marching up Union Street this time accompanied by a rickshaw blaring out ‘the Empire Strikes Back’, the next time, the rider urging us all to ‘bow down to your Imperial Masters. Do you?
        Will there be 100 Labour MPs left in the PLP when Corbyn wins a second time and New Labour malcontents split and form the New SDP?
        Battleship Better Together is holed below the water line, and is sinking fast.

  16. I think one of the lessons from the EU referendum is that an immensely strong case can still lose.

    Cameron went into the EU referendum convinced he’s going to win 70%-30%, with a “Remain” case that was very strong. And yet his lead was gradually chipped away by a very hostile press, and a “Leave” side that had no problem with lying and misleading the public.

    We can expect similar circumstances surrounding the second Independence referendum (if we get one). Is that to say we can’t win it? Of course not. But we should think long and hard about how we’re going to deal with this issue.

    As the EU referendum showed, just stating the facts may not be enough.

  17. I’m thinking of contacting Ruth Davidson, Jackie Baillie and the Liberal with a guaranteed Union-boosting job creation scheme for the impoverished region known as Scotland. I’ll be suggesting a network of torture and exterminate camps where the enemies of regimes such as China, Saudi Arabia and Iran could be processed by job-hungry Jocky Scotches. I reckon we could create at least 37,000 jobs in this service industry. Broad shoulders. Best of both worlds. Clout.

    • No words of comfort from Dugdale, Davidson, and Rennie?
      Of course not. While their blessed Union faces its biggest constitutional crisis in 309 years. they are off on their holidays.
      Eff Scottish ship workers , I’m off on my holidays, and my 8 week paid break is more important to me than the fate of a few thousand ship builders, whom we frightened into voting No on the back of yet another lie.
      Me getting an 8 week break on £1200 a week is more important than the future of ship building in Scotland..
      What about Jackie Baillie and her 20,000 ( or is it 30,000 now?)Trident jobs defence? Nothing to say on this BAE farce, JaBa the But? After all it’s the Tories wot done it? Surely a good Labour wummin should be tearing Davidson’s lungs out over this betrayal? Sorry, they’re Better Together. Silly me.
      Or is she on holiday too?
      Is the SNP the only party working on the impact of England voting to Leave, despite Scotland voting to remain.
      Maybe Wullie will send us a post card.

      • So to recap the past four weeks:-

        EU membership flushed

        Trident Renewed

        Frigate order for Clyde on perma hold

        To put this in perspective, a brexit without exfil plan has proven an economic and constitutional catastrophe. Trident 2, a £200bn weapon system renewal which has no practical use other than mass murder has been greenlit in the most appalling display of the democratic deficit I’ve seen since the implementation of the poll tax. Finally our order for thirteen frigates, which became a cast iron order for eight, which was then put under review and is now on permanent hold, would have cost £8bn. £8bn for badly needed next gen ships, which would have been under constant use and demand. An order which was used by Better Together, a promise, a pledge an assurance to the workers on the Clyde.

        I really don’t think there is a pleasant or diplomatic way of saying this. Her Majesty’s Government and the political parties and individuals who formed the Better Together campaign, utterly, completely and with calculation, mislead the Scottish electorate. No more, no less.

        Three more to add to the list of failed pledges and assurances made during the independence referendum.

        Y’know, you expect politicians to guild the lily. You expect that out of an entire list of pledges and assurances one or two will be pure fantasy and one or two will fail to trap because events can make a mockery of promises, but when every single core pledge and a host of assurances besides bite the dust? That’s not guilding the lily, or shit happens, oh no. That is a systematic and calculated betrayal of public trust.

        This cannot continue Jack and there is only one way to end this farce. We politely, but firmly close the door on the political union. I honestly don’t think many who voted no on Sept.18th signed up for this.

        • Macart, certainly not the thousands of HMRC Scottish civil servants who are to lose their jobs when the new Super HQ opens in Crawley; Johnson’s pound in Crawley will definitely benefit ‘Strathclyde’, eh?
          I would marvel if MacDougall, Darling, or Brown dared show their faces during the Indyref II Campaign.
          We have food banks, Pay Day loans at Loan Sharks’ rates, a PM that chillingly admits that she would authorise the murders of 100 thousand innocent men women and children, a Scottish Establishment (including religious leaders) who sit on their hands while our society is systematically destroyed by the rainbow alliance of Tory cuts and right wing bellicose warmongering, while 2/3 of children in poverty have at least one parent working for buttons.
          I could go on. We must ‘Scexit’ now.

        • “fail to trap” Macart? I haven’t heard that expression in years. Is this some subliminal reference to the UK going to the dogs?

  18. this has never been a union its an occupation by a foreign country , the only way this Tory lot can govern is by our co operation if people in this country dont follow their dictates they can’t carry out any of their policies , the first should be to invite all members of the PCS union who work in job centres to refuse to go along with these vindictive sanctions only doing my job dosent cut it when have we heard that excuse before only doing my duty is not a defence .

  19. Wonderful article, as always, Dug. One of your most incisive; nay, inspiring.

    When the WGD is not with you, do folks call you ‘Douglas’?

    [BTW, it’s ‘tariff’. Yes I know. There are two ‘g’s in ‘bugger off’.]

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