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By Jason Michael
IT IS AN ENDLESS SOURCE of embarrassment to me that Scotland’s independence supporting elected MPs take up their seats in Westminster; a parliament that by its very constitution and arithmetic exists to serve the interests of England over and against those of Scotland, Wales, and the occupied counties in the north of Ireland. It comes as a surprise, one must admit, that there are still voices in the independence movement – a majority even – which defend our MPs’ presence in this obvious parliament of Greater England. Sure, we have heard their arguments a thousand times. But not one of these arguments stands up to scrutiny.
We are told, or rather, we are led to believe, that people would not vote for these parties if those elected refused to take up their seats. In actual fact, we have already seen this not to be the case. When, in June last year, Ian Blackford led Scottish National Party members from the House of Commons in protest the SNP experienced its largest surge in membership since the aftermath of the 2014 referendum. On the ground and over social media the call was everywhere the same: Keep them out, bring them home. Had the leadership of the SNP opted at that moment to withdraw their elected members from Westminster there is little doubt that that radical gesture would have further radicalised the independence movement and increased the party’s support.
Then we are to believe that without MPs in the Commons we will have no say over British government policy. Really? What a nonsensical and ludicrous suggestion. Even had the SNP 59 seats at Westminster it still would have precisely no influence or say over British government policy – which is and always has been, and only ever can be, policy shaped by England’s needs and wants. In an English parliament of some 650 seats, Scotland’s pathetic 59 is but an insulting token. Add to this the 40 seats allotted to Wales and the 18 to the occupied counties, and it is plain to see that against England’s 533 the calculus of Westminster is the “democratic deficit” of colonial domination.
No one can deny that right now “standing up for Scotland” means resisting Brexit. How, let me ask, is that working out for our girls and boys sitting in England’s parliament? This point does not even need to be argued. For as much defence as we gain from our MPs in Westminster against the state suicide that Brexit is, we might as well launch a campaign of guerrilla knitting. The very notion of standing up for Scotland and Scottish interests in the Commons is preposterous. We are humiliating ourselves – that’s what we’re doing. Scotland in Westminster is a joke.
So, we’re told then that our MPs are in that foreign parliament that they might represent their constituents. Pull the other one, would you? Westminster’s sole purpose as regarding Scotland is to keep Scotland and we Scots in subjugation and pillage our embarrassment of natural resources. Am I wrong? Of course, I am not wrong, and it is as plain to see as the nose on your face. Westminster’s purpose with regard to Scotland is to hurt Scotland and the Scottish people. The embarrassing presence of our MPs in that parliament is, however well meant, an act of collaboration. By sitting there and playing the Westminster game, our MPs are legitimising the robbery of Scotland.
Scottish interests have only ever been served since our own miniature Westminster was opened in Edinburgh, and it is only at Holyrood that Scots constituents’ cares and concerns can be represented. There simply is no argument to this. It is a simple statement of fact. So, I ask you: Why in the name of God do we still have independence supporting Scots MPs sitting in England’s parliament? The answer is simple: They are there because they are there! At any moment they can be brought home – and they should be brought home. No independence supporting politician can, in good conscience, make a mediaeval oath of obedience to the monarch of another country in the parliament of that other country. What are we, monarchists? Go ahead, count the monarchists in the independence movement and I dare say you won’t find enough to fill up the big red Brexit bus.
We stand no chance of radicalising the independence cause, and trust me – it must now be radicalised, unless the pro-independence parties – and chief among them the SNP – begin to act as though we are independent already. The British state cannot be overcome so long as we are playing the political game according to the rules set by the British state. Those rules are rigged. What of that do you have trouble understanding?
We stand no chance of radicalising the independence cause unless the pro-independence parties begin to act as though we are independent already.
By the look of things, right now, the island of Ireland will be unified before Scottish independence, and that is being achieved every day by the policy of abstentionism being carried out by the Republican politicians who have consistently and correctly considered Westminster the parliament of a foreign nation – one they have no business in. Scotland has no business in the English parliament, and we have long since passed the point where our presence there is serving the cause of independence. In fact, it harms the spirit of our freedom. It perpetuates the defeated false-consciousness that has us believing that it is somehow superior to any form of Scottish self-governance. Even our “parliament,” by its very constitution, acknowledges the superiority and the absolute sovereignty of Westminster.
Westminster no longer benefits Scotland. Westminster never benefitted Scotland. What is meant here is that Westminster, so long as we remain there, functions to impede the further growth of the independence movement. The problem this causes us has become so glaring, so obvious, that it has become a source of shame. Independence presupposes a nation’s freedom, and Scotland can never and will never be free until it has rejected its slavish place in England’s parliament. If we want to send London a message, if we want to stir up the support for independence – then that must begin with another Westminster walk-out and it must be continued with our refusal to return. It is time for us to have our own parliament, and I don’t mean London’s puppet assembly in Edinburgh.
Westminster: To stay or to go
14 thoughts on “Why Are We Still in Westminster?”
I had often asked that question…
Until I saw the CRG: Act of Union Bill. If they are gunning for your constitutional document, leaving the field to them would leave an open goal. http://www.constitutionreformgroup.co.uk/crg-act-of-union-bill-launched/
If SNP walked away now, I can imagine Westminster changing their tune and suddenly extolling the value of House’s Scottish sessions …just to have their MP’s vote on a new Act of Union. Claiming that the remaining MPs represent the people of Scotland. Its like being sold for a bag of gold twice.
The SNP had to do it when they had 56 seats. Now they are stuck as they wanted to play small target in the 2017 election (after starting the indy ball – SNP then put their head in the sand) – they now have to be there to guard the goal.
SNP wanting to keep a clean nose is killing them politically. Watching SNP in parliament is like watching the polite priest trying to argue with a hoard of angry gorillas…its never going to end well for the priest. They need to find that balance between being moral adults and using the arcane tools of parliament to hit their opposition hard.
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I am out of patience. We need to bring them home and engage Scotland’s enemies asymmetrically by whatever means are required in the moment.
I activist predicted the SNP walk out weeks before.Not the date but the option would be used and it was.For several weeks of PMQ I had the feeling they would walk out.
I wish that I had felt that they would have stayed away.
ACH THE NEXT TIME THEY WALK,SOON,WILL BE THEIR LAST TIME IN WESTMINSTER
I just speed-read the Act-of-Union Bill. It leaves Westminster with absolute and unlimited sovereignty. So it gives no protection to Scotland, our Government or our Parliament. Would the passing of such a bill require the revocation of the Acts of Union of 1707? Would that then free Scotland (Government? Parliament? A Constitutional Convention? etc?) to not pass a new Act of Union?
I do agree with Jason that the current situation of our MPs in the English parliament is untenable. I’m disappointed that the SNP is hanging back in acting for independence.
Hi Jason, Ive just sent you an email regarding your friend Paul Wright who is stalking me. He tweeted an old phone number of mine last night and its clear he found my address on an old website when I used to run my own business and that is how it was handed to you. Robbo and Bill Brady. I am obviously having to go to police right now because Paul has also stated that he could be really nasty and tell other people how to find me. He also has a dossier of my tweets which he has been compiling for months now and its clear I am being stalked by this man and his dangerous pals. I am just letting you know how they got my address when you obviously asked for it so you could send me a letter. Through stalking me. Take care. Pauline.
Hello Pauline – If what you are saying has any truth to it, then you must contact the police. It has become known to me that you have shared private communications with unionist activists online. This means that I am forced now to communicate with you as though you were a unionist activist. What this means is that I will not now be speaking with you at all. You have placed yourself outside the independence movement and I can be of no further assistance to you.
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Totally Agree been saying this for sometime…
We don’t need another “Think Tank” Polling company staffed by hand picked colleagues of the Party that supposedly “Leads” the Independence Movement. We need action. Since 2014, support for Independence has remained steady. Without any “Official” campaign. It has remained there because of and in spite of no actual “Leadership”.
The time is NOW, for Radical action.
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Might we at last have reached that tipping point where the Yes movement collectively decides that we are no longer asking nicely for our independence but demanding that we be freed from the Union? #DissolveTheUnion
Is it time to take things out of the hands of the SNP? They envision a referendum after Brexit. I think that may be too late. When Viceroy Mundell opens his British Government in Scotland offices, and they take over the responsibilities that should be returned to Holyrood, they may take over much more and make it impossible for us to act for independence. I’m amazed that the SNP leadership is actually trusting the English government of the UK!
Peter – Now your talking! We have reached that point.
The SNP have all but conceded the referendum will be after Brexit. It’s a high risk strategy. They think a few months of agony will turn people to independence.
But what if it’s bad ,but not that bad. Have they not thought that Scots have an awfy habit of putting up with crap because they are downtrodden. Or as it is just now. Scotland is viewed as debt ridden and useless. Aye and think how bad you would be with independence.
So to me we have to stop Brexit happening by offering an alternative. Sadly I think we are heading out in March folks. The SNP have boxed themselves in!
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It has taken me sometime to understand what you are saying but now I in no doubt that you are correct