David Cameron is bursting his face laughing as we wake up to the latest Tory insult to Scotland: The Scotland Act 2016 has given us all the power we need to rearrange deckchairs on the sinking HMS Stupid Northern Colony.
According to David ‘Fluffy’ Mundell we’re all going to wake up tomorrow to a Scotland that is “one of the most powerful devolved administrations in the world.” That’s brilliant Fluffy, except for the glaringly obvious fact that your words are utterly meaningless. Let’s cast our minds back to the forty-eight hours before the 2014 referendum. Big Gordon Brown, straight from a primer at the London School of Speech and Drama, arrived in Scotland to thunder home the fear and deliver the last-minute rule changer that was the Vow. All of a sudden a third option was put on the table. Rather than a Yes or No to independence we were given a sniff at the deliberately infantilised “Devo-Max.”
Mr Malky (@MrMalky) May 23, 2016
Weren’t we all promised that this was Home Rule in all but name, made simple for the less than clever people of Scotland? And, more to the point, weren’t we told last year by Cameron himself that this vow had been delivered? So what’s this now in the Scotland Act, the delivery of a surprise twin? Maxim devolution for us BBC-labelled dullard Scots is more legislative autonomy over abortion, speeding tickets, parking fines, gambling regulations, and railway policing, and a couple more to come on the never-never. Sure, if this is it, and we’re willing to accept it, we must be thick. Not to make light of so serious an issue, but it would make you wonder what they’re getting at when they give us complete independence over abortion.
If the Scottish Secretary thinks that this makes us one of the most powerful devolved parliaments in the world then he must be the dimmest of the lot of us. Canada’s Northwest Territories assembly has been devolved from the Ottawa government since the 1970s and has full control over its natural resources, and there isn’t even a whiff of oil or gas in the Scotland Act. No, this isn’t anything like meaningful further devolution, and it comes nothing close to what was promised to us in the Vow or throughout the Smith Commission submissions and negotiations. This Scotland Act 2016 is exactly that, an act – Westminster acting the maggot again.
Of course income tax and welfare (without any mention of spending powers on the NHS) are delayed until the London Tories have butchered them. What we have gotten is a big fat nothing, and no matter how much of a brave face our own finance minister Derek Mackay puts on it, nothing is going to change the fact that we have been swindled. This comes to us at the same time as the Scotsman is spouting another poll suggesting we’ve lost the nerve for another referendum. If anything, this Scotland Act insult should put a fire under our backsides and get us out and agitating the country upside down. We have to get out of this hole. Thankfully at least we have freedom over where we put our road signs and what we write on them. We can start with a decent one facing south at the border.
Oxfam Scotland Even it Up Campaign 2016