A guest post by Samuel Miller
To most folk it must seem that the world has gone a bit on the pure mad mental side out there at the moment. Our political systems? Our government and practice of politics? Y’know, those institutions we look to for the administration and management of our needs and our safety? Seemingly in free fall. Gone off reservation. Absent without leave and apparently dead set on taking a wrecking ball to their own population.
Confusion seems to be the only policy on offer throughout the UK and people are quite rightly concerned that there is nothing and no one they can turn to, or rely on, to make it all stop. By people I don’t just mean the ever increasing numbers of those already engaged, but also the vast majority who aren’t. Those who aren’t party members of any kind and whose general attitude towards politics is either grumpy, ambivalent or outright apathetic. People who pay their taxes, just want shit to happen and generally get on with their lives as best possible under normal circumstances. All they know is that it’s all gone terribly wrong somehow and why the hell is that?
Seems like as good a good time as any to pause, take stock and re-focus. Remind ourselves who we are, why we’re here and where the responsibility for this current crop of epic screw ups should be laid.
So in no particular order… The latter responsibility is, without doubt, currently owned by the party of central government. That is the day job, yes? A job which you’d think includes a duty of care and responsibility for administering to the needs, interests and protection of the populations within said institution’s care. Brexit? Austerity ideology? The rise of intolerance and demonisation of demographics by an ever more extremist media? A fair chunk of this belongs to the party that made naked greed and such intolerance socially acceptable (some might say popular). A party who made the ideology of ‘me masel’ and I’ a national pastime. That would be yer Conservative party.
Next we come to the Labour party, who had more than a little culpability in making this epic galactofuck happen. They are currently still going through that long soul search thingy. They’re not only looking for an identity to call their own, they’re looking for a policy, an ideal and a set of ethics t’boot. ‘Kinder and more honest’ they are NOT. Half of them forgot what they stood for and the other half deliberately ditched their moral compass in favour of just winning for the sake of winning. They embraced wholeheartedly the practice of politics UK style. They embraced the system they were created to fight and reform. Two words… Labour peer. Historically and as a party, they’ve proven time and again that they can mislead, cheat, steal, demonise, patronise and brown nose with the worst of them. A party mired in tribal hatreds, self entitlement and internal strife.
TBF, I do have some sympathy with their current media woes. Yet this does beg a question. A question which highlights their hypocrisy on the issue of being hounded by a biased media narrative. Where were they when half of Scotland’s electorate were on the receiving end? You know? Ordinary people who harmed no one. Their people. Their population. Where were they when the Scottish government were being pounded day after day and week after week by this self same media? Was that media honest one day and then suddenly and for no apparent reason, cruelly biased the next? No. No, they were always the same media and for decades Labour were just peachy with dropping in content, editorials and official party releases to do the dirty on both their opposition du jour and their own population. Maybe they should take some time to think about that these days, though I doubt they will. They are the party that doesn’t do responsibility or apology. They, much like their Tory opponents/partners, do scapegoating followed by extensive historical airbrushing. It’s a thing with UK political practice apparently. Never say you’re sorry. It’s a sign of weakness etc. So not epic twattery and ignorance at all then.
Then we come to the Libdems…. and frankly? I can’t be arsed. They are where they deserve to be these days. They were ever and always perceived by many as enablers, but you always hoped they were also what they claimed to be. A middle way. A calming influence on the other two. As it turned out? Not so much.
Laydeeeez an ginnamin. Hay give yooz, the political establishment of the UK. A trio of parties who have enjoyed decades of your support and personally I doubt you could slide a fag paper between them in terms of ethics and practice. You want to know why we are where we are? Then look no further than those who had total control of the economy, legislation and constitution (unwritten) of the United Kingdom. Look no further than those who have control of the narratives that shape your choices and opinions through a media that has more than just a common stake in keeping things exactly as they are.
When you cut through all the bullshit. All the spin. All the airbrushing of history and the truly massive amounts of myth creation. The buck stops with those who had the power and the responsibility which WE gave them. Their worst crime though? That would be convincing you that you didn’t matter. That you had no opinion and no power to change things.
The following is a comment from below the line on another forum and reposted here by kind permission of the author. It also speaks for me and so far as I’m concerned, it should be sent as a letter to every self entitled, ignorant and arrogant party leader, policy gonk and over opinionated metrocentric media pundit.
To whom it may concern
What do I want for my country?
I want the young to have free education and the freedom to travel the globe learning how others live and how different cultures treat the world.
I want the poor, the vulnerable protected and the old to enjoy the last years of life in safety.
I want the entrepreneurs given the chance to develop ideas and businesses.
I want a country that has a decent infrastructure and takes care of its beauty.
I want a country with friends around the globe .
I want decisions made in Scotland with the option of marching on parliament when they mess up.
I do not want WMDs on my doorstep polluting the beautiful Firth of Clyde.
I do not want the young of my country sent on illegal wars in distant places to kill and be killed – defend Scotland by all means but do not take the word of a third country that war is ever necessary.
I do not want a health service which only services the wealthy.
I do not want the BBBC, STV and so called Scottish newspapers to pretend they are the bringers of truth and cannot be challenged – in fact I do not want them at all. (ends)
The only thing I’d probably have added would be: NOW GET IT SORTED! Yours Love n’ hugs etc. (Maybe not kisses though.)
So why are we here today? Why is public contribution and engagement on the issue of self determination for Scotland’s population so very necessary?
Because you do matter. Your opinion matters and you do have the power to change things for the better. Because if we focus our collective will on the real source of our problems. If we drop the small differences, the rosettes and the politics which others would turn into ideological chasms, then we can make that change happen. Because you do have the option of determining the kind of country you want to live in.