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By Jason Michael

IT HAS COME AS A SHOCK to Mhairi Hunter that there are people in the independence movement who choose to employ choice language when speaking to those who oppose independence. Well, Mhairi, welcome to the internet! If the youthful naughty tweets of Mhairi Black – an SNP MP – can be turned against the National Party by unionists online and the British establishment press, what hope do the rest of us have? People will say whatever they want on their own social media platforms and there is nothing whatsoever pearl clutching in SNP HQ can do about it. It’s the internet! But her words were, of course, reduced to rank hypocrisy the moment she took it upon herself to describe these unnamed delinquents as “trash.” She only made it worse by saying she didn’t realise calling people – human beings – trash was offensive. So, in the world of Mhairi Hunter and the independence movement’s self-appointed thought police it is an unforgivable sin to be rude to these utterly fictitious “soft noes” while describing our own movement members as trash is somehow acceptable. On this, at least, Mhairi is being wonderfully inconsistent.

But this is a problem for the Scottish National Party, and it has been for quite some time. The author of the Grouse Beater website was spuriously accused of being an anti-Semite for mentioning the Nazi’s attitude to trade unionism in a criticism of a Labour-affiliated trade union and naming a representative of that union who turned out – entirely unbeknownst to the author – to be Jewish. Her Jewishness had nothing to do with the criticism of the behaviour of her union. Her Jewishness had nothing to do with the piece that was published. Yet, the fact that he had mentioned Adolf Hitler and a Jew in the article meant, according to the twisted logic of post-truth politics, his words could be branded antisemitic – a favourite tactic of the Tories. Rather than giving Grouse Beater a modicum of political cover against these false and damaging accusations, the SNP ran for the hills. Its response was to rescind his party membership (it being lapsed at the time), its unqualified Equalities Convener published an insane blog post defending the accusation on the opinion of her Jewish friends, and now we have Jack Deeth bumping his gums in condemnation of Grouse Beater.

On account of citing two Israeli academics and Noam Chomsky – all of whom are Jews – in an article in which I described how the State of Israel uses a “fiction” of the Holocaust in order to delegitimise the cause of Palestinian liberation, the British unionist Scotsman newspaper implied I was a Holocaust denier. The Daily Mail and The Herald added to this the charge that I was an IRA sympathiser because of a tweet in which I stated the obvious: That if the British government causes the failure of the Good Friday Agreement then there are, as we well know, dissident Republican groups in Ireland who will – according to the Green Book (the IRA’s rules of war) – treat British soldiers and security forces in Ireland as “legitimate targets.” What assistance did I get from the SNP? Feck all! The morning after this garbage appeared in the British press in Scotland all but a few SNP politicians who had followed me on social media unfollowed.

Can we seek legal remedy? No, not really. Stu Campbell took a key unionist politician to court in Scotland – a “Crown court” – and he got nothing. The sheriff determined he had in fact been wrongly called a homophobe, but that Kezia Dugdale had every right to publish this awful slur in a national unionist tabloid because of some nonsense about “fair comment.” The same was the case when Alistair Carmichael – then Secretary of State for Scotland – was taken to court for telling blatant lies about the First Minister by independentistas in Orkney. The union’s court found him to have lied but absolved him of all responsibility. At bottom, and we all know it, the courts and the press in Scotland are firmly on the side of the union, and anyone trying to win a case against the unionist press or the unionist political establishment might as well be pissing in the wind.

Those of us putting ourselves out there in support of independence might as well be strangers in a foreign land. Every structure of law and media propaganda in Scotland effectively ensures that independentistas are stateless. We live in a Scotland that does not yet exist and the state that does – Great Britain, in seeing us as a threat to its power and its control of our valuable resources, treats us as an alien menace. But we know this. What else can we expect from an ass but a kick? Yet, it is in knowing this, as part of a movement for national independence, that we sorely need the representation, support, and solidarity of a political party – something not all of us are getting from the SNP at present, and this is a serious problem.

“Independence is coming!” Sure, of course independence is coming, but it has been coming since 1707. It might not arrive tomorrow, next week, or even next year. The truth is that we still might be waiting – now is not the time – for a few more years. In the meantime, we simply cannot continue like this; we cannot suffer indefinitely a situation in which class interests and basic political cover and representation are suspended for those of us in the movement – and this is no small number – who are not the favourites of the current SNP leadership. Sooner or later this is going to become a significant and highly divisive issue in the movement, one that may even result in a permanent fracture and the loss of independence. Those of us the SNP will not protect cannot now wait for the SNP to wake up to these realities. What we need, and need urgently, is political representation of our own; a pro-independence party that represents the political opinion considered undesirable, as trash, by the Scottish National Party.

Aware of this lack, the SNP is preparing not only to win the ideological war with the British government, but also to win the peace – in which it and its political ideology will dominate a newly independent Scotland. This is exactly why we are seeing it leave people like Grouse Beater, myself, and others out to dry. The strategists behind the SNP’s long game are right now actively purging those who will challenge them in the early days of independence. This too demands that we set about the formation of another party, one that represents the Scotland wanted by the overwhelming majority in the grassroots – a socialist Republican party. Those of this opinion do not want to have MPs sitting in England’s parliament and taking an oath of allegiance to a foreign monarch. What we desire is a party for the Scottish Republic – one that will defend the voice of activists deemed trash by those who would prefer the continuance of Westminster capitalist-imperialism in the Kingdom of Scotland. Clearly these are two competing independences, and the struggle for which one will become an independent state has already begun.

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A monarchist and a republican go head to head


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16 thoughts on “Two Scottish Independences

  1. The fact that Mhairi Hunter is complicit in cutting 2.5 million from homeless services in Glasgow alone should be enough for SNP folks to see the light , even without this latest diatribe of hatred. There’s a problem within the membership with people who just will not accept that their officials are not all perfect.
    This must stop. We have bad apples , Mhairi and Fiona Robertson are bad apples . I have personal knowledge of five long time activists who cancelled their membership this week simply because of Mhairi.
    This can no longer stand. The party demonize the ‘little guys’ in the party but elected folks can do/day what they like .
    Mhairi Hunter should resign , but she won’t because that takes integrity , and she has none.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. They are setting themselves up as The Establishment in the new Scotland. I’m renewing my membership under protest for one last chance, but once independence is gained, it’s clear from the mindset of the SNP hierarchy that they will wish to perpetuate a pro-NATO, Neoliberal continuum and will therefore be my natural enemy in political terms.
    We will need to go into independence with a strong opposition to make sure our independence is a real one.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. The day after the extremely successful AUOB March and Rally, the front page spread in the Sunday National made sure that any elation was squashed. Three major Independence For Scotland figures using Unionist terminology to describe their own activists was a basic error. Some folk do cross the line and although their comments are counter productive they are the minority. The SNP do have @theSNPMedia rebuttal unit but it seems to be on life support. I have been tweeting on this subject all week, including to the three men concerned, and have had a great response from the pro Indy Twitterati. It’s down to them and other people with influence in the SNP to put a rocket up the rebuttal unit so that it’s not all left to us. After all our efforts, to be labeled CyberNats by our own side is just not on.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. ….” basic error”…
      Why do you let them off the hook by ascribing an innocent motive? Stop being so polite and let the facts do the talking.

      It looks a lot like this was intended (i.e. this is no error)…with the added benefit for the 3 and SNP that there is plausible deniability. Too many factors work against that “nice” reading. Eg:
      – late in the day attempt to change the time (and diminish attendance)
      – Alyn Smith’s clashing campaign meeting in Edinburgh (how could he not know or be informed)

      The SNP appears to be uncomfortable with YES activism for Scottish independence – but is all too happy to be on stage with “Peoples Vote” to save England from itself….WTAF.

      Like

  4. Mhairi Hunter ” honestly did not realize (sic) trash was (sic) an offensive word”. Kezia Dugdale is too stupid to know the meaning of homophobia in Wings “homophobia” case. Mhairi Hunter states her support for Kezia Dugdale in Wings case.

    “Now the biting makes sense.”

    Liked by 2 people

  5. An SNP that won’t fight for Independence will never see independence…..

    So there is no point saying YES must not split the vote…keep in line…follow the leader. If the SNP fails to gain indy in the shadow of Brexit (which is looking more likely by the day) then supporting the SNP is looking like follow the leader to the nowhere zone. Trapped as ostracised for wanting out but never getting out. SNP desire to be too polite only plays into Westminster’s hands. It means you can never fully call out their atrocities (because that language would be intemperate).

    Surely it must be time for a “Dissolve the Union” party. Scotland YES needs a DTU.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Before the SNP Conference I wrote and withdrew my membership. I said, ” “To those who believe independence is not the right change, I say bring forward your own proposals” An invitation to Unionists to make more false promises and tell more lies! She’s still playing the game of the English parliament of the UK by fantasising that she’ll get a Section 30 order. I seriously doubt that there will be a Scottish Parliament if Brexit occurs before the next scheduled Scottish Parliamentary elections. By then we’ll have lost our Scottish National Health Service, authority over which will have been clawed by Westminster into its clutches and sold off to American “healthcare” (sic!) companies. I seriously question whether the SNP really does want independence and wonder whether you are so content with all that you have achieved as a devolved government, protecting Scotland from the worst of Westminster’s acts and policies, that independence has been relegated to a fantasy.

    Another factor in my decision to terminate my membership is the treatment of Gareth Wardell by your Gestapo-like Disciplinary Committee. I know antisemitism firsthand. I fought against it in Moncton NB, Canada in 1990-92. A paper I wrote that was published in the New Brunswick Law Journal was used in a Human Rights case that came before the Supreme Court of Canada. There was not the slightest hint of antisemitism in the article used as an excuse to dismiss Wardell. I do not wish to be associated with a party that takes such intolerant, Gestapo-like action against a member.”

    The reaction of the SNP leaders to the Glasgow March for Independence confirms my disappointment in the SNP.

    I wonder if action for independence needs to be taken out of the hands of the SNP. I have suggest that the Scottish Independence Convention take up the mantle and organise a referendum. If the SIC does not want to would All Under One Banner do it?

    With the Act of Union Bill in the House of Lords, and Michael Gove’s threats to deprive the Scottish Government of cash and take over more Scottish spending, i’m concerned that the SNPs strategy to wait until after Brexit happens will lose the war. The English Tory government of the UK seems to me to be gearing up to make it impossible for Scotland to act for independence after Brexit. I think that the Act of Union Bill may well be fast tracked to vacuum seal the Union.

    I think that Craig Murray’s proposal is the way to go. https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2018/12/the-scottish-parliament-does-have-the-right-to-withdraw-from-the-act-of-union/?fbclid=IwAR1qusDGh12Jqivd6-GcnVSaOF3iy9loIUepK5da2W5Fl5hHZ4k82pwyJdI

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m very disappointed at the lack of support for YES activists from the SNP. They are very naive if the believe they can survive without us. Mhairi Hunter’s is totally out of order with her reference to yessers as trash. And then to claim she did not knowv it was a derogatory insult is ridiculous; she is either very stupid or not fit for public office.
      Although I’m an SNP member I am becoming slightly disillusioned. They are playing by WM rules which just won’t work.
      However, I don’t think now is the time to set up a new political party. My preference would be to see how the current situation plays out. There is still some hope that independence could be won in the next year or so.

      Like

  7. I wrote a long reply but the internet ate it (probably a good thing) so here is the main point:

    I agree in detail and principle with this article, very much, but I think we need to recognise that our eggs are all in the SNP basket right now. There is no time to set up and establish any sort of credible party that can rival and supersede the SNP in order to secure our Independence in the time we have before the UK Brexits Europe. Had we started this project in 2015 – I was suggesting something along those lines back then as well – we would probably still be too late. Right now our only hope is that the SNP come through with a Referendum and we, the Scottish people, get behind it and win it. I have less and less faith that the SNP will deliver this and, if they don’t, we will have to prepare for a very long (decades long) campaign and that will be the time for a new party or three.

    IMHO, of course…

    Liked by 2 people

  8. I too am a republican, anti monarchy, anti Nato. These are a few big areas I disagree with the SNP on. However I think anotger party is for after independence. What we require is to get rid of some of tge dead wood in our party.
    To get independence you must be radical not conservative. Nicola thinks that she has the measure of the middle class no voters. Hence she is playing to them. In truth if she relies on them, she will fail. They are wishy washy selfish fainthearts.

    She needs to embrace the working classes like never before. They will be the ones who drag the cosy wealthy I’m alright Jack’s to independence.

    She is currently making a balls up of our strategy.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I kinda understand the argument of ‘sticking with the SNP’ until after Indy like many seem to argue but you can stick with them by voting or even leafletting without actually being a member or giving them money. When people start cancelling they might get the message that folk are unwilling to blindly accept things.
      What they rely on is the money rolling in no matter what , that is fundamentally unhealthy .
      The SNP create an illusion of listening to their members , but they do not , they pay lip service , they nod politely and then forget you. In the last ten years , how many resolutions on anything remotely controversial or genuinely radical have they accepted for conference?? Nuff said
      The 2017 general election campaign overseen by Derek Mackay and Peter Murrell was a boring,bland failure . If Murrell was not married to Nicola he would have been gone long ago . He has never modernised HQ , it’s still sited in a small office , he hasn’t enough staff to look after 120k members. He has failed the grassroots continuously yet he is untouchable . His kangaroo courts are the final straw.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. @Big Jock
      SNP’s disastrous 2017 GE strategy was a warning of a potential NS tactical weakness.

      In the midst of the full-on Brexit crazy (with Scotland being labelled “Saboteurs”)…SNP loses seats. Now when it needs it most, it has weakened it negotiating position. SNP looks to be too scared to drive the debate and hence will be at the mercy of Westminster….it will always lose that game.

      Like

  9. When you live in a country that was annexed by the threat of force, economic sanctions, and bribery and where your democratic right to self-determination is continually attacked by the massed forces of the media, the occupying government, and their quisling minions in your pretendy parliament, then they should be grateful that the most irate we get is to use harsh words on the internet.

    Try doing that to the Irish and see what it gets you.

    What did the French do when their country was occupied – write stern letters to the Reich?

    And yet our mild response gets us lambasted by the very people we thought were working for independence?

    I’m starting to smell shite.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Worrying times. How did we get from 56 mps to apathy and cowardice from the SNP.
    The Tories will not agree a section 30 for all eternity. Nicola suggests it’s unsustainable. She is being disingenuous. We all know it.
    She has had three years to achieve the square root of hee haw.
    She has no intention of doing anything. She needs to go.

    Like

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