Well that’s it. Time to give up and go home. I don’t mean the independence campaign, Scotland needs it more than ever now. I mean serious political commentary – although thankfully this blog has never specialised in the serious. How can you be serious when the biggest piece of political news in Scotland today is that Ruth Davidson is going to appear on Bake Off? That’s it. That’s Ruth’s Scottish Conservative contribution to the pressing issues of today, she’s going to go on Channel 4 and swap double entendres about soggy bottoms with Sandi Toksvig.
The Scottish Tories are like the Life of Brian what have the Romans ever done for us sketch in reverse. What have the Scottish Tories ever done for us since their amazeballs breakthrough (TM the Scottish Unionist Media) and supposed detoxification? Bugger all, except to prove that they’re really still as toxic as they ever were, an excuse for sectarian dog whistles hiding behind a douce net curtain in a middle class suburb, to which they’re now adding some Great British Bake Off double entendres about how stiff you can whisk your cream. Their achievements in Parliament have begun and ended with the demonisation of the travelling community and a call for more Union flegs at Last Night of the Proms.
An effigy of Bungle the bear from Rainbow made out of moist toilet paper would be more effective at standing up for Scottish interests in Brexit than our cohort of lamentable Scottish Tories. Although it is entirely possible that an effigy of Bungle made out of moist toilet paper is in fact our current Secretary of State. It’s certainly difficult to tell the difference. The Tories haven’t even managed to remove VAT liability from the Scottish emergency services, the only ones in the UK who have to pay VAT. They’ve been silent on Brexit, the biggest issue facing us today, content to roll over and insist that Scotland must comply with whatever their bosses in the cabinet decide.
What is the point of the Scottish Conservative party? Oh yeah, it’s willfully confusing devolved and reserved issues during election campaigns, and having no policies whatsoever except saying that they’d oppose a referendum even if a large majority of the electorate voted for parties which supported one. The only difference between Ruth Davidson and Mariano Rajoy is the cheery photo opportunities. Both have the same lack of respect for democracy, and both put their own party interests before those of the country. Rajoy doesn’t want a Catalan referendum because he’s happy to create chaos as a distraction from the many and varied corruption scandals that are engulfing his party. Ruth doesn’t want a Scottish referendum because she knows that opposing one is a convenient distraction from the truth that her party have nothing to offer Scotland except a damaging Brexit that Scotland rejected and a return to the sectarian and xenophobic politics of the 1950s.
There are two reasons why this self-publicist with no policies has a reputation as one of Britain’s freshest and best politicians. The first reason is that Conservative politicians are so woeful that Boris Johnson and Jacob Rees Mogg count as towering intellectuals for the sole reason that they know that people in Latin America don’t actually speak Latin. So it’s not difficult for Ruth to stand out from the crowd. When the crowd consists of Andrea Leadsom, David Davis, Michael Gove and Liam Fox, even one of the Seven Dwarfs would stand head and shoulders above them. The Tory party do have seven dwarfs of their own – Sleazy, Lazy, Greedy, Kooky, Grubby, Loony, Shameful, and Schlock. All of them are junior ministers in the Brexit Department. When you’re up against a shower of nasty weirdos all you have to do is to appear halfway normal and you’re already well ahead of the game.
The second reason is the pisspoor nature of the British press. Any investigative journalism that we do have in this country is drowned out in the tidal wave of right wing boosterism. The British press is widely regarded as being the worst in Europe, and regularly comes at the bottom of European wide polls asking people how much trust they have in their media. The Scottish press is if anything even worse than the British media as a whole. Ruth Davidson used to be a BBC journalist, and when she embarks upon yet another of her cheery cheesy photo opportunities she’s facing a press pack largely made up of her pals.
She’s rewarded with one free ride after another. When the SNP had their conference recently, it was Ruth who was invited onto the telly to discuss it. Well I say discuss, what I really mean is that she was given yet another opportunity to explain to us all how very very bad the SNP are and how no one wants another referendum. On the very rare occasions when she is subjected to the kind of rigorous questioning that’s de rigueur when it’s an SNP politician, she falls to pieces. But then Ruth rarely has to face anything more penetrating than making jokes about the filling in a sponge cake on Bake Off.
But you can only go so far with a photo op. The regular gallons of Jackie Baillie which is spouted by Tory MSPs and MPs is an embarrassment of such a degree that it’s even starting to embarrass the brass neck of Ruth herself. And that takes some doing. The party remains mired in third place in the opinion polls, and the Scottish party is privately panicking about the poor calibre of many of their elected politicians. Your average Tory MSP is a person who firmly believes that Gaelic road signs cause pot holes, and doesn’t seem to understand that you can’t ask parliamentary questions about your business interests.
That’s what you get when you select your candidates on cronyism and their personal allegiences to Ruth’s career progression while your sole answer to every single question about policy is to say that Scotland doesn’t want another referendum. No amount of glossy press presentations can hide the fact that there’s precious little content, and that content that does exist is as nasty and antithetical to Scotland’s interests as the Tories ever were. The Tories like to crow that Scotland has reached peak nat, the truth is that Scotland has reached peak Tory. The only way forward for Ruth is down. A career on light entertainment on the telly might await her, but she’s got as much chance of ever becoming Scotland’s First Minister as soggy bottom from Bake Off.
The Wee Ginger Dug has got a new domain name, thanks to Indy Poster Boy, Colin Dunn @Zarkwan. http://www.indyposterboy.scot/ You can now access this blog simply by typing www.weegingerdug.scot into the address bar of your browser, the old address continues to function, the new one redirects to the blog. The advantage of the new address is that it’s a lot easier to remember if you want to include a link to the blog in leaflets, posters, or simply to tell a friend about it. Many thanks to Colin.
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