There’s been a couple of opinion polls over the past couple of days. First there was YouGov’s multiregressive synaptic trigonometrical poll, or something like that. It was some new sooperdooper method of polling from the bottom up, and the result would see an absolute majority for the Conservatives in the UK as a whole. Because too many people in the rest of the UK are mad and gammony. The same poll’s Scottish subsample would place the SNP on 43 seats, almost wiping out Labour, taking Caithness from the Lib Dems (I met the SNP candidate Karl Rosie when I was in Wick the other week – good guy, vote for him!) and making modest gains against the Tories.
Today a new, Scotland only poll, was published. An IPSOS Mori poll for STV places the SNP on 44%, an 18% lead over the Conservatives who have just 26%, with Labour a distant third on 16% and the Lib Dems picking up just 11%. On this result, the SNP would see a gain of 13 seats taking them to 48, the Tories would lose 7, dropping to 6, and Labour would be left with just Ian Murray in Edinburgh South. Meanwhile the same poll places support for indepenence on 50%. As it was primarily a poll of Westminster voting intention, it seems (although I could be mistaken) that it doesn’t include either 16 and 17 year olds or EU citizens, both groups who would have a vote in an independence referendum but not in a Westminster General Election. That would place the true figure for independence very slightly higher.
Both these polls point to similar outcomes. Support for the SNP in this General Election has increased compared to the General Election of 2017, and support for independence continues to show a slow and incremental increase. However a poll doesn’t really matter, only voting does. So it’s vital to ensure that people who support independence and support the SNP get up and get out to vote. If we don’t make sure that happens, then the sole crowing narrative that we’re going to hear from the media and the anti-independence parties is that Scotland doesn’t want independence, and doesn’t want another referendum. No party is perfect, but the SNP is the only vehicle that we have, and it’s the only vehicle which can get us across the bridge of the next General Election. All routes to another independence referendum must first cross that bridge.
Meanwhile, after assuring all the other party leaders that Boris Johnson would be subjected to constant interruptions from an Andrew Neil who has no interest in getting answers from politicians, but merely wrong footing them, we discover that the Conservative leader has -at the last minute – cancelled his interview. He got the result he wanted, the other party leaders were sneered at by the Brillopad, while he gets away without scrutiny. The BBC was at best naive to agree to allow Johnson to be interviewed last. It was entirely predictable to everyone that he’d cancel at the last minute after interviews with the other party leaders had already been broadcast. The Tories have judged that it’s less damaging for Johnson to be accused of cowardice than it is for him to be shown up to be the empty headed opportunistic liar that he really is. So instead of being ritually humiliated by Andrew Neil, he’s going to spend some time wherever it is that Jacob Rees Mogg is hiding. If Andrew Neil, the chairman of the right wing Spectator magazine, can’t get an interview with Boris Johnson, the former editor of the right wing Spectator magazine, then any pretence of political accountability in the UK is dead.
Johnson had already pulled out of the Channel 4 debate which is due to focus on climate change. Brave brave brave bold Sir Boris. This is a man whose sense of entitlement is so great that he believes that he has the right to rule the UK, to determine the course that our lives take, to unilaterally suspend Scotland’s democratic right to decide its own future, to take us out of the EU, and all without being held to account either by the public or by Parliament. He’s very brave when it comes to calling gay men “bum boys”. He’s fearless in his willingness to insult muslim women. He’s bold in his ability to father children that he refuses to acknowledge. He’s courageous when it comes to using racist language to describe people in Africa. He’s heroic when it comes to dismissing the abuse faced by women MPs. But when it comes to explaining himself, when it comes to being held to account for his lies and deceit, he’s a spineless snivelling coward.
This is a man who would fail a character test for a licence to have a dog. He’s a man who penned an article in the Telegraph about how it was unfair and reprehensible that married couples were expected to contribute via their taxes to the support of single mothers who “chose” to have children without being in stable relationships with the father, all the while he was cheating on his wife and siring children he later refused to take responsibility for. Yet this loathesome creature is entirely likely to become the next Prime Minister of the UK.
Yeah. You might detect a note of scorn. You might pick up that I really dislike Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson. You’d not be wrong. This man is dangerous. He lies as easily as the rest of us breathe, and he’d be happy to sell his grandmother to a US health corporation if he thought there was an advantage in it for him. So you can be sure that he’s got even less concern for the rest of us. I lived all the way through the 1980s, and worked up a supervolcano’s worth of contempt, anger, and disgust for the Conservative government of Thatcher. This guy is worse.
Voting to reject the lying liar Boris Johnson and his bunch of xenophobes, sectarian bigots, and English nationalists is a moral imperative. It’s only by ensuring that we hammer the Tories in Scotland that the Scottish Government will have the political and moral capital it requires in order to pursue Scotland’s right to decide its own path – a path that takes us away from deceitful entitled posh boys who refuse to be held to account as they trash our public services, destroy our democracy, and reduce us to forelock tugging downstairs servants in a dystopian Downton Britain.
So vote. Vote to keep out the Tories. Vote for the candidate most likely to keep the Conservatives out in whatever seat you live in. In most seats in Scotland, that means voting SNP. Your future, the future of your children, and Scotland’s future depend on it.
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My new book has just been published by Vagabond Voices. Containing the best articles from The National from 2016 to date. Weighing in at over 350 pages, this is the biggest and best anthology of Wee Gingerisms yet. This collection of pieces covers the increasingly demented Brexit years, and the continuing presence and strength of Scotland’s independence movement.
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