But this new antisemitism – the use of “antisemitism” to silence dissent, by calling everything anti-Semitic, weakens our ability to combat real anti-Semitic racism. When everyone is an anti-Semite no one is an anti-Semite. Reasonable people who can see through the political weaponisation of this language begin to dismiss – as I have been guilty of doing – almost every claim of antisemitism. We become deaf to a terminology that, ever since Auschwitz, should ring immediate alarm bells the moment we hear it. “Antisemitism,” thanks to pro-government media outlets...
It gets worse for unionism, however, with individual unionists clutching at straws in their efforts to delegitimise the independence movement’s grievances and invent their own. Examples of this abound, and we are well familiar with them: The claim that the Scottish government’s baby boxes will only result in the incineration of our wee bundles of joy, that Scottish infrastructural investment – lauded everywhere else in the world – is here nothing but a “vanity project,” and that independence will only hasten an invasion by space aliens (yes, they said this).
Scotland’s sometimes pro-independence left is not particularly large in terms of numbers. It would not be a significant threat to the stability and cohesion of the wider movement if this element decided to defect en masse to Jeremy Corbyn’s side, but we must also consider the weight this group has on social media. At present it seems safe to say that half – if not, more – of the movement’s bigger pro-independence blogs define themselves as belonging to the radical left, but they have been losing traction in recent months. The defection of these certainly does pose a problem.
Both the Labour movement and the Labour parliamentary party have been the greatest let down for the working class in the entire history of industrialisation and its aftermath, and – as far as we are concerned in Scotland – it can remain what it has become. The left in Scotland has shifted to the Scottish National Party and the independence movement. We have begun to waken up to the fact that if we are to make things better for ourselves then we have to do it for ourselves.
Gerry Hassan demands, following an editorial trend in much of Scotland’s supposedly pro-independence new media, that independence must be the answer to an as yet unknown question. This is not an episode of Jeopardy! The progress of a nation through time need answer no questions. It moves by its own accord, under the steam of its own initiative, following the complex calculus written out by the thousands of expressed and unexpressed desires of its people.
The “leadership” of Scottish Labour is and has always been meaningless. There is no leader of Scottish Labour. Scottish Labour is not a political party in its own right. It has no legal or political reality. Scottish Labour is the British Labour Party in Scotland and every decision of any importance is made by and for the benefit of the real party leadership at 105 Victoria Street in the City of Westminster, London.
Kezia Dugdale is in herself a perfect example of what is wrong with the Scottish Labour Party. Back in the day, when so many in Scotland voted for Tony Blair in the 1997 general election that delivered a Labour landslide, we didn’t know we were voting for “Blairism.” We were duped. Few could see that New Labour was nothing but a re-branding of Thatcherism. No one new he’d be the beast he’d become. We didn’t see the illegal wars, and the groundwork of austerity.
No one can deny, not after the crowds chanting his name at the Glastonbury festival, that Jeremy Corbyn – the Chippenham commissar – is a sensation. As Britain’s answer to Bernie Sanders he has rocked the small world of British politics. So powerful was his unexpected surge during the last general election he even had movers and shakers in the Scottish independence movement fawning after him. So when his stage management team declared he would be coming to Scotland we were right to be nervous.