A guest post by Samuel Miller
You know, I still can’t get my head round it. So many questions and so few answers. Especially given the headlines of the past few weeks. Questions are good though. For instance, just what makes some people put others in harms way? Why mislead to manipulate opinion, when you know others will suffer? When the political class sit down for their triangulation sessions, debate their tactics and strategies over tea and biscuits and such, (or is it latte and biscotti these days? *shrugs*). Do they even for an instant consider the impact of their actions? Is winning the argument, the power, the advantage, so important that they forget the why of ‘government of the people, by the people for the people’?
When did it become a competition, a sport? When did win at all costs include laying waste to the prize? Make no mistake, the population IS the prize. The population is the nation and a nation… is only as good the sum of its parts.
The point of government is to care for your ALL of your population without fear or favour. To put bread on the table. If you’re a civilized, even progressive, society? It’s about how you care surely? How you care for your elderly and your infirm. Keep safe and free from harm those in your charge. To legislate and create laws that don’t cater for the advantage of demographics, but protect, nurture and provide freedom of choice for ALL. It’s a covenant, a contract between the people and their choice of legislation. THIS is what generates confidence, pride, community, empathy and … unity. As a concept, it doesn’t appear to be rocket science. You get what you give.
Does any of that resemble today’s UK? Is today’s politics really what the Conservatives, Labour and the Libdems consider the traditional and acceptable rough and tumble of the adversarial system? Are their actions toward the populations of the UK, in any way, the actions of responsible government? I mean, these parties have formed the backbone of the system of UK government for generations. Their practice of politics, their management of the responsibilities and powers of government, ARE what shaped the UK we see today.
So what happens when what you give is mired in self interest, greed, demographic exclusion and a less than considerate approach to mass manipulation? In our own experience here in Scotland. When the political establishment or their more committed chums in Meejaland assault the Scottish government and essential services with questionable figures, or out of context claims. Y’know, their version of what they laughably term ‘holding to account’. Is that what we want them to do? Is that how we feel politics should be practised? What does that do to us, d’you think? What does that say about us?
When you misrepresent, mislead, break trusts and undermine. When your tactic du jour is to inspire fear, mistrust, even hatred of others amongst your population. When you place the rights and democracy of your population at risk. When you treat others with arrogance, ignorance and disdain. Well? You WILL get what you give.
As we’ve pointed out previously. Maybe it’s about time they stopped for a second and took a look around themselves. Take a look at their precioussss, precioussss, political union. REALLY look and marvel at their works. How much societal unity is there to be had out there about now d’you reckon? Seems to me their practice of the dark science of politics has done a bang up job of fracturing any hope of uniting the populations of the UK. Maybe they should ask themselves one or two more questions. What is more important, the political union or the social union of these islands? In their drive to secure the one, for their own selfish reasons, are they truly willing to sacrifice the other?
It really doesn’t have to be that way. Scotland’s population have already seen that there are other ways to govern. Only a taste so far to be honest, but it’s a glimpse of something yet to be fully realised. Something with the potential to revitalise and repurpose the politics of all the nationalities of these islands. Redraw the nature of our national political relationships, our system of politics and secure the future of a social union. In my view, the only one that truly matters. Personally, I’ve never required any politician’s permission to care for friends or family wherever they are on the globe.
About that potential though.
Asking questions of those who have held power over our lives for so very long is a good first step. Reminding them that eventually you get what you give is another.