The Union is a lie

Are you feeling the lurve Scottish people? Are you feeling wanted and respected as an equal partner in this most perfect family of nations? Are you feeling that your voice is being heard and the views of Scotland are being taken into account by the mother of parliaments? No. Me neither.

I watched parts of what was supposedly a debate in the House of Commons, only to switch off in disgust at the arrogance and contempt which met the views of all the representatives of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Some Unionists like to claim that it’s not Scotland which is held in contempt, it’s just the SNP, and that’s perfectly fine with them. But last night in the Commons it wasn’t just SNP MPs whose views were dismissed out of hand. What we saw last night were the representatives of Tory England laying down the law to the representatives of Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland.

Michael Gove got up to speak, and put on a stronger Scottish accent in an attempt to sound hard. This failed miserably, because he’s Michael Gove. There are innovative jam trifles which are harder than Michael, and they’re certainly a whole lot more palatable too. It was the most Scottish thing about the entire sorry exercise that has become for Scotland a humiliating travesty of democratic representation. Just two MPs representing Scottish seats were called to speak, just one from Wales and one from Northern Ireland. All were cut short and in total the non-English parts of this supposed union of nations got just five minutes of speaking time in a debate which went on for most of the evening. English Tories got to speak. Brexit supporting Labour MPs from English seats got to speak. Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland got the equivalent of a footnote in a Russian novel, one of those tragedies where the leading character inadvertently kills off the love of his life because he didn’t realise and didn’t care that his arrogance and selfishness were driving her to despair. Until it was too late.

It’s too late now. Watching the farce of Westminster makes you wonder what the point is of Scotland sending MPs to Westminster. They can easily be outvoted, even on topics which directly affect Scotland, by non-Scottish MPs. Those would be the same non-Scottish MPs who won’t allow Scotland’s MPs to have a vote when it comes to issues that they deem to be non-Scottish. All that Scotland’s MPs do is to lend legitimacy to a system which ignores and traduces our country, they are a fig leaf of representation covering the dickish behaviour of pricks with no respect.

You can have a Union, or you can have a unitary incorporating state. Westminster’s denizens, both Tories and Labour, have made it very clear that they expect the latter. A Union demands that the parts of that Union have a clearly defined constitutional role, that they really are equal partners in fact and in law and not just in rhetoric. That’s not what we’ve got. What we’ve got is a state in which it makes no difference what Scotland, or Wales or Northern Ireland, wants, we get what the largest part of the supposed Union decides that it wants. There is no negotiation, there is certainly no compromise.

The British state as it is currently constituted is a creature of English nationalism, pure and simple. And that means that there is no Union. There is only the agency of English nationalism which uses Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland as colourful window dressing to disguise its true nature from itself and from its supporters in the non-English parts of the UK. That means that those amongst us who declare that they are proud Unionists believe in a comforting delusion that exists to deceive us all.

If you believe in the Union, you believe in a lie. You believe in something that the British state will never allow to exist. If there was a real Union, then Scotland would have a constitutional right to be consulted. If there was a real Union, it is incompatible with the English nationalist fetish of the absolute sovereignty of the Westminster Parliament. If there was a real Union then Tory MPs who know nothing about Scotland and who care even less would not be able to impose the most reckless, xenophobic, hard right Brexit on a Scotland which has voted for something else. A Union implies equality and respect, what we’ve got right now is the subordination of Scotland to a nasty and inward looking right wing English nationalism.

This isn’t about Scotland versus England. England has a long and proud tradition of radicalism and progressive politics. But the point is that at this juncture in history England has fallen in thrall to the other side of its political coin, the insular side, the island side, the side that sees itself as exceptional and special and with a god-given right to rule. Within this so-called union there’s nothing that Scotland can do to protect itself from it, and there is no point or gain in Scotland sacrificing itself on the altar of Tory xenophobia in solidarity with the English left. Real solidarity gives hope, and the best way we can give hope to the English left is by building an alternative in a sovereign Scotland.

So the question is where do we go from here? If we send representatives to a parliament in which they are arrogantly dismissed, in which they are second class, and in which they are a permanent minority who will always be out-voted and bayed down when the interests of English nationalism are at stake, we need to ask ourselves what is the point of them being there. Do they serve any purpose other than legitimising the rule of a parliament which has not the slightest interest in taking Scotland’s views into account, and in maintaining the fiction of a Union that’s not a union.

Today in Bella Caledonia Mike Small argues that the time has come for Scotland’s MPs to withdraw from Westminster and set themselves up as a Constituent Assembly. I’m not sure the time for that is just yet, but he’s right that it’s drawing close. The time to withdraw from Westminster is when the second independence referendum has been called. We need them there right now to highlight the hypocrisy of a British establishment that’s hell-bent on depriving Scotland of a voice.  Once the referendum is under way then Scotland’s MPs could withdraw from Westminster to form an alternative body which can hear from all interests and groups in the country and begin the process of creating a Scottish constitution, a constitution that’s fit for the 21st century, that’s fit for the democracy that right now we don’t currently have.

A second referendum is coming soon, and yesterday’s antics from the English nationalists who call themselves unionists have only made it sooner. The Union is founded on deceit. That political reality is what will bring about the restoration of Scottish sovereignty. Scottish independence will come about because of the actions of so-called Unionists, not Scottish nationalists. It will come about because the Union is a lie.

Audio version of this blog post, courtesy of Sarah Mackie @lumi_1984

[soundcloud url=”″ params=”color=ff5500&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false” width=”100%” height=”166″ iframe=”true” /]

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0 thoughts on “The Union is a lie

  1. I feel for our MPs, putting up with more than flesh and blood should reasonably be asked to endure. They’re certainly earning their pay right now.
    I look forward to seeing them rise as one, not look back and walk out of that place, never to return.
    I’ve even bought the popcorn…

    • Before leaving they should present to the speaker a document on behalf of the people of Scotland, rescinding the treaty of union, sealed with Seal of Scotland which is still in existance.

  2. It was certainly be a waste of SNP MP’s time, when a 2nd Ref is called, to sit in Westminster when the full force of Unionism is at work in Scotland.
    It’s weird hearing Dugdale saying give up on Independence and “work with Labour’ when she offers not the smallest part of a working plan. I know she hasn’t got one but still weird to see.

  3. Pingback: The Union is a lie | speymouth

  4. English Unionists are nothing more than colonialists. They regard Britain/UK/England as synonymous–one and the same. Scotland is but a part of Britain which, itself, is seen in English eyes as Greater England. While Gordon Brown declares himslf as being North British, Theresa May does not see herself as South British for there is no such thing.

    Scots who declare themselves as Unionists don’t realise that they are declaring themselves as second-class English. They wrap themselves in the Union Jack like it is some comfort blanket that makes them feel part of the big gang; being a Proud Scot means being small and that, to such folks, simply doesn’t sit too well with them. They are not Proud Scot Unionists but rather Proud Scot Defeatists who think importance and relevance can only be achieved by being in a bigger gang.

    Being part of the big gang gives them a false sense of security; they think because they are part of it then the big gang won’t pick on them. They don’t realise the big gang doesn’t care a toss about them, willfully ignores them, treats them as useful idiots whilst asset-stripping them.

    In short, ‘British’ is nothing more than a manufactured, pseudo ‘nationality’ for those with a serious inferiority complex. But it doesn’t care a hee-haw about them. And some are just too dim to realise it.

  5. “The British state as it is currently constituted is a creature of English nationalism, pure and simple.”

    This shouldn’t even be controversial. Yet I guarantee that if someone were to suggest that on Question Time (or whatever), they would be denounced with a fury that would make Donald Trump pause. As a wise man once said, the greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn’t exist, and this goes for English nationalism and the ‘Union of nations’ con job.

    You’d feel sorry for Alicsammin in that clip. Intellectually he would wipe the floor with every last one of them in the Commons, yet he get’s treated as if he is an ungrateful schoolboy.

    • as in The Outer Limits ” they control the horizontal they control the vertical ” all avenues in order to let the wider population know whats going on have been blocked . For the time being that is that situation can’t last forever .

      • ‘they control the horizontal, they control the vertical’… Yes but they don’t control the curly. Time to get curly.

        Like WGD I don’t think the time is right for them to walk out, the treatment they are receiving is appalling and needs to be played out.

        However, I would like to see them set up a stage in the streets of London, near to the parliament, with good speakers, and video footage, and start publicly debating all the faults of and dangers of Brexit, not just for Scotland, but for England.

        With 48% of English voters completely unrepresented, what would happen if they started to be supported and have a voice. The English parliament parties would have difficulties in their own backyard.

        It would keep them busy, and be a legitimate thing to do without taking anything away from our own cause.

        • The thing about majorities Daisy, especially slim majorities, on huge contentious issues? They tend to want that large and outspoken minority to disappear. They don’t like to be reminded that their majority relies on any form of compromise. They preach democratic will, but not democratic representation and that is why eventually, they lose their majority.

          Their core vote are incapable of accommodating the other POV, changes in circumstance, the introduction of new information etc, etc. They are incapable of believeing that a percentage of their win was down to low information, or swithering undecideds choosing poorly, or simply those intimidated into voting with them. They refuse to accept that ‘things change’, that attitudes change.

          The long and short of it is, you have to be prepared to win with grace. To win and bend heaven and earth to keep your word. To win and reach out with honest hand toward the losing argument.

          We’ve seen two examples of what happens when you can’t or won’t follow that simple premise in the UK. The result is societal carnage and division on an unprecedented scale. How NOT to win as it were. Triumphalism, punishment politics, jury by media and demonisation of … well, you name it.

          How can you expect societal unity when you have expended so much effort in dividing it in the first place? That is the problem facing both the UK gov and brexit leadership and the better together leadership as was. Neither thought or cared about the aftermath, merely the winning at ANY cost.

  6. I also watched this ” English Parliament in action” and agree with Irma above; I do not often post on this site but tend to sit in the background and read all the posts in an effort of attempting to educate myself on Politics, I have enjoyed every post and although I leave this site every night more educated and informed, it also greatly angers me at the injustice Scotland and its people have to endure.

    It is blatantly obvious to any interested reader that this unfair Union cannot carry on. It has been said many times on W G D that Westminster cant and wont change ” why should it ” . My hope is, that the S N P is cataloguing every “put down” every ” No ye canny” every negative phrase and comment and will explode it and throw it in the face of every ” Better still together ” campaigner . Yes indyref2 will start I think very soon, and we better get our arguments and position crystal clear . The opposition , will as I have said before Go Ballistic on Scotland with project fear 2, after all, just think what they have got to loose and what Scotland would gain . ie light touch paper and stand away . ps I love fireworks .

  7. Yes, indeed, english nationalism is in full swing. Our SNP MPs are there because they were democratically elected to represent Scotland and the people of Scotland. It makes you wonder just what the Labour MPs, (who were awarded the right to sit in WM by Scottish voters for so many years by the voters), ever did for Scotland, they accepted their country of Scotland as a region, to be used and abused.

    Last nights performance by the english nationalists was an absolute disgrace, the deputy speaker in the HoC’s losing his rag was totally and utterly unprofessional and disrespectful towards our elected SNP MPs.

    We still need our MPs to go to Westminster, to at the very least, expose how the unionists are lying, ridiculing and showing nothing but contempt towards Scotland and Scotland’s people. Some will watch this and be shocked, even the no voters must see how they are being treated as idiots, to be ridiculed and laughed at.

    Should any of the EU27 watch this so called parliament, they will too have their eyes opened as to just what the UKOK actually means.

    Really, the union which was never really consensual from the outset, is a sham, it is being exposed as such and the english nationalists in WM do not like it one bit. Well tough, they had their cake, ate the lot and chucked a few stale crumbs back at Scotland. Not for much longer, no thanks! The skeletons are out of the cupboard now, they are not going back in either.

    • You have to hand it to these Labour MPs who managed to disguise the fact that we dont and have never mattered , i believe they were well and truly paid back and in spades for their work , whats happening even Maggie said a majority of independence MPs returned to Westminster , would see the end of the Union .

  8. As John says above I like to sit quietly and read (everything thing you have written Paul)

    This is the first time that you have had me in tears since just before 18/9/14.

    Not tears of sadness but tears of grief,of anger and pure frustration with the way our elected officials are treated.

    I want Independence but I don’t want it done by anger. I wanted an auld lang syne, a cup of friendship and joy of release but sorrow of going. Now I see that is no longer possible, all that’s left is the anger of the spurned lover.

    And ther’s a hand, my trusty friend,
    And gie’s a hand o’ thine;
    We’ll tak’ a cup o’ kindness yet,
    For auld lang syne.
    For auld lang syne, my dear,
    For auld lang syne,
    We’ll tak’ a cup o’ kindness yet,
    For auld lang syne.

    No longer.

    • agreed it’s a pity the NO voters refuse to waken up and still defend this worthless Union ,It’s not a Union its an Occupation we understand it why oh why cant they see what is right in front of them .

      • Partly because they feel put off by sectarian superiority. Sorry, we have to do the hard thoughtful work of persuasion and allow everyone to make their own judgements. Asserting you’re right and those who disagree are wrong just won’t work in winning people over to the cause for independence. Once persuaded and arriving at their own conclusions, I’m sure the zeal of the convert will apply and previous Noes could be our greatest advocates for Indy.

  9. Wind the clock back a hundred years and we find ourselves as Ireland did then. Marginalised, trivialised, the Westminster Parliament working against our best interests—-and the London media painting our people as gross, indolent and sub human. Racist and colonial .

  10. I watched the debate on Brexit in the Scottish parliament today and couldn’t help but observe the physogs of Ruth Harrison and one Ross Thompson sitting beside her,

    What an eye opener! Ruth had a permanent scowl on her face while separately Thompson had one of those daft laddie faces, animated while table thumping.

    Thompson got up to speak and amongst other things made great play on the absence of Nicola Sturgeon (present at the start of the debate). Little did he know that Ruthie had sneeked away at the same time. What a plonker!

  11. It’s beyond belief that any Scot cannot see what the Westminster Tories are doing! It’s heartbreaking the way they simply shrug off the opinion of our democratically elected MP’s. Scotland has to break free from this so called Union sooner rather than later. Alba gu brath!!

  12. I share the wave of outrage following the shameful treatment of our elected MPs by the howling baying mob of English MPs.
    In an earlier exchange, Ian Murray can be seen in the background, his I phone resting on his considerable girth, texting absentmindedly while his colleague condemned EU Nationals being used as bargaining chips.
    Of course as an Edinburgh MP he has no interest in the fate of Johnny Foreigners taking all their British jobs.
    I’ll comment later.
    Independence is inevitable now.

  13. I’ve seen lots of edited highlights of Donald trump on the internet, usually done to make him look as bad as possible.

    Would someone like to do the same thing to MPs braying down Scotland? A minute or two of easily shared, concentrated English Nationalism.

  14. No referendum.No UDI.The Treaty of Union has been shown to have been leglly broken many times over and I cannot understand why every scottish sovereign person is waiting for permission from an illegal english parliament of the said United Kingdom for a referendum, and IF we are given permission,then we would have to negotiate before and afterwards.Westminsters politic and politicians are pushing and egging on Scotland to go for a referendum,infact they mention a referendum more times than we do.Has anyone of us asked why. it is far safer and quicker to reset the button,by claiming with prove when and where this has union broke down.There is plenty of documentation and illegal laws that westminster has passed that prove these scottish claims, ie, the Poll Tax was set in Scotland one full year before it was in England.and there have been many other laws that have slipped under the radar such as Trident,recently mr Fallon said that by placing nuclear power in scotland this gives only one target,I may have mis-interperted this but I do not wish my country to be a target in a nuclear world.We shouid not be following and waiting for a referendum nor should we claim possibility of war instigating UDI.reading between the lines of tory speeches I wouid say this is the root they want us to take.
    Another treaty of the union act said that all monarchs had to be of one particular faith,I have read that this has been changed or about to be, this would have to be researced, I do not always have the resources to do this as I have been homeless for a few years now and I lend a friends computer. The treaty of union was between two kingdoms, Scotland and England only and supposedly equal. This is no longer the same Treaty of Union that was signed.

  15. What Union?

    “The Union is a lie”, Wee Ginger Dug quotes,
    certain electorate ~ are rewarded for votes!
    We others, however, needn’t be quite smug…
    perhaps we’d be marking head-sizes, eh, Dug?

    We shall see what’s then to be seen…maybe,
    gratefully, we hope, glad it’s not you & me.
    However that story threads, we’ll then see,
    our observing comments: anything, no yippee?

    North of border: Saor Alba Gu Brath we cry!
    South of same, England can’t, so must try?
    Tomorrow’s times’ll steadily change lands,
    Politically: WILL resolve our own Islands!


  16. I hink the actual treaty of union has been violated and nullified by last week’s supreme court ruling claimed to supercede scotland’s distinct legal system.

    • And in many, many other ways, not least of which was that Scotland was to retain its own mint.

      The time has long since past that we throw off the shackles of English colonialism and became an independent nation once again. We have been occupied and exploited by these English foreigners for far too long. We have been treated as serfs in our own country, used and abused by these foreigners. It is time to end the enslavement of the Scottish people.

      We don’t need the permission of the English to hold a referendum. We have the legal right under international law. Moreover, under Scottish law the people are sovereign, not the English parliament. We also have the right, due to the continuous breaches of the Treat of Union, to declare UDI.

  17. Another excellent article from the Wee Ginger Dug!
    Watching the clip circulating on social media of Joanna Cherry being cut short and Alex Salmond’s angry objection, would fair mak ye scunnered, angry and in agreement with many who think that it’s high time that our valiant SNP MP’s turned their backs on a Westminster that appears to hold them in contempt.
    However the 56 are not sitting there twiddling their thumbs – we only see a fraction of what goes on down there – a lot of digging and researching is going on while they have access to documents, and information in the massive Westminster library that they would not otherwise be privy to.
    I have spoken to my own MP, Chris Law, among others and believe me that they are uncovering information and evidence which will prove more than useful when the time finally arrives for us to split and we make sure we get everything that is rightfully due to us!
    None of this would have been possible had we returned Labour MPs to Westminster as none of them would have taken the trouble to investigate or research, indeed did not when they were there in times gone by!
    Our SNP MPs are working for the future good of Scotland in ways we cannot even imagine! What you see on TV is the “show”, but even that is working in our favour as it’s becoming more and more obvious to the soft No’s that Scotland is not being listened to as an “equal partner in this union” and is in fact being disrespected at best or ignored and insulted at worst!

    • Indeed, Patrick Grady was excellent tonight putting forward every SNP amendment (and amendment to amendments) to the derision and disgust of many tories (and mebbes some Lab ??) present. Yet there was bugger all they or Deputy Speaker Bully Boy Hoyle could do about it because he and the SNP were following the exact procedures of the house. Sometimes you achieve more by playing by their rules than breaking the rules and oh boy was Hoyle hating every minute of it. Well done Patrick, well done SNP and bring on the revolution, for it shall be our time this time ! Saor Alba

      • Yes indeed Susan , I was so proud of our MPs last night, and particularly Patrick Grady, as they played by Westminster’s rules to take control of the debate accompanied by howls of derision from both sides of the House. Well done SNP you collectively played a blinder.

  18. I agree that as soon as a second independent referendum on Scotlands independence is call, Nicola should recall all her MP From Westminster and lead the fight from their constituencies, show Westminster that Scotland shall not be ruled over by a Tory-led Westminster government.

    • Yep, rallies and speeches in every constituency, exposing the lying tactics of the MSM and the Tory government. Exposing all the scams and tricks they get up to in Westminster to keep their “colony”.
      Video’s of all the put downs our MP’s have endured, all the shouting and braying that greets them at every turn.
      I’d second what Irma and Bill Purves propose- when the time is right, and it’s so close you can almost feel it.
      On our terms though, not on theirs.

  19. This is the next phase of the Westminster plan to deny Scotland independence. They will goad us in anyway possible, they want us to depart Westminster and declare UDI, then the next phase of the trap is sprung on us, for they will rabble rouse certain unionist hard core factions into rioting, then WM can send in the army to restore order and dissolve the Scottish Parliament and ruin any support we have in Europe by manipulating the media to twist the truth to suit WM.
    History has shown us this is how WM works just look to India, Malaysia, China, Greece…..

  20. I honestly think we are beyond the point where a second referendum is a good idea – I think we should be withdrawing from westminster, and declaring independence. That is what almost every other country who has split from a union has done, historically – independence by referendum is unusual, and almost timid. We’ve gone down the timid, polite route, and they’ve shafted us for it. I say it is time we stopped playing their game, and legitimising their right to rule, and simply said, “we’re done”

  21. Latest opinion poll, post Theresa’s “Hard Brexit” speech shows the gap narrowing. Now 49% for independence, 51% agin. In an optimistic mood so that that might well switch to a positive number for independence over the next month or so.

    I kind of agree with other commentators on here that, once a second referendum is called, all SNP MP’s should withdraw from Westminster. But that may be the heart leading the head. How would it go down with your average no voter? Not the zoomers that write in to the Herald and the Scotsman, but the scared and those suffering from some sort of Stockholm syndrome? For it is they that we need to win over.

    Nicola probably has a strategy worked out. In Nicola I trust. So there!

    • Next month? I am all for Scottish Independence; I said I’d emigrate if 2014 had been yes, and if Indyref2 happens and succeeds, I still will.

      But, and that’s a big one: even if a bill for Indyref2 passes in Holyrood tomorrow, it will probably take at least until 2019 to hold it. Last time the support went from around 20-30% to 45% in two years of campaigning, so why expect to move so fast now?

      Sure, the way the Unionists handle this mess is helping Independence’s case, but getting the swing to majority within a month? That’s taking being optimistic a bit too far, surely?

  22. The problem with Irish analogies is that it took the 1916 uprising and the war of Independence, 1919-21, both massively suppressed by British soldiery – remember the Black and Tans – followed eventually by Northern Ireland and the Irish Free State in 1922.
    Do we want to follow that same road? How to declare our independence, then, without violence?

  23. The withdrawal of the 56 MP’s has to happen …. it may be only a symbolic gesture but it follows other historic examples, the Irish abstention and the classic “no taxation without representation” cry from America ….. it will resonate in Westminster and they will take note …. and you can guarantee “threats”. It might take just such a wake up call to the electorate in Scotland to focus on our collective future.

  24. Another day another circus. Another day with yet more goading, provocation and humiliating putdowns.
    I have been asking myself the same question for months now. Why? What is going on?
    It seems to me that Westminster’s behavior towards Scotland is becoming more desperate, erratic and outrageous by the day. Either Westminster knows something we don’t and can treat Scotland as it sees fit without fear of consequence, or Westminster is attempting to goad the SG into some sort of action. By action, I mean possibly calling for an early referendum on independence.
    A declaration of UDI would be a disaster. A couple of years ago Wings had an article on the subject of UDI. They listed the countries in similar situations to Scotland who have declared UDI. The result was civil war in every case!

  25. Patience gentlemen, patience.

    There are 3 countries with elections which matter greatly this year. France, Germany and the Netherlands. None of them has a certain outcome, but all of them have a bearing on the EU.

    The election of a clear zoomer – and one who will not be able to resist giving Scotland the benefit of his good advice – is good for our cause. The more Theresa courts him, the more corrosive she becomes. Indeed the faction of Tory which has taken over is the worst kind. Give then time to hang themselves.

    Brexit is a disaster, but the economy continues to grow, and until the full train wreck situation becomes clear, the other side can pretend they made a sound choice.

    We do not have consistent polling above 50%. But it is solidly and consistently staying at around 47% yes. It may be moving in the right direction at last. But history teaches us to hold the high ground is the best position before any battle. Last time out the vote was called because the National Party had won an election unexpected. They could not decline to call a vote on their raison d’etre. This time we have the luxury of picking the time. Not absolutely, but within reason.

    Just be patient. If you are keen to get going there’s nothing stopping you getting organised. Start preparing leaflets. Start canvassing if you want. But get into a Yes group. They are springing up again. Go to events – our host is an entertaining speaker. Raise funds.

    We have to win this time.

  26. Hi Paul

    the time has come to withdraw and make clear that we wont play by the Westminster rules anymore. By staying at Westminster we carry on the narcissistic ritual that the Westminster Tories think is a union. Recall the MPs, and make it clear we are finished with them. Otherwise they will think they have control. The only way they can have control is if we let them have it.

    The European union is our future and there is no way the EU will turn us away, they need us more than we need them. Now is the time and now is the hour.

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