For a number of very good reasons, Craig Murray’s blog has long been essential reading for anyone with an interest in Scotland’s affairs. His passion for independence is matched by his abhorrence of injustice. I suspect these things are not unrelated.
Craig’s coverage and commentary on the Alex Salmond trial has been exemplary. He has done a remarkable job of keeping us informed while (mostly) avoiding falling foul of the restrictions on reporting. He has powerfully conveyed a sense of the turbid intrigue surrounding Salmond’s prosecution without finding himself banged-up for contempt. I applaud him. I may even buy him a pint when circumstances permit.
I write this having just finished my third reading of his recent demolition of Dani Garavelli’s appallingly biased and dishonest account of the same trial that Craig has so admirably kept us abreast of. His methodical dissection of what is nothing short of a vicious propaganda assault on Alex Salmond is reminiscent of Stu Campbell (Wings Over Scotland) at his forensic best. The outrage is palpable. And entirely justified. There is little point in me trying to add anything to what Craig has written about Garavelli’s travesty of reporting and shameless character assassination masquerading as journalism. It takes a lot to outdo the Britsh mainstream media in terms of baseness, sordidness and sheer despicability, but Ms Garavelli has managed it. She should be ashamed!
But she won’t be ashamed. Because she has embraced an ideology which holds that no conduct, however immoral or unethical in any other context, is impermissible when defending or promoting a grotesque perversion of the feminist ideal. Justice in particular ceases to be a concern. Nothing illustrates this better than Garavelli’s article. What most of us would surely hold to be basic justice is turned inside out and upside down as the evidently innocent are counted guilty while the apparently guilty are given a free pass.
I’ll be honest and admit that I find it all but impossible to give an account of this ideology. I quite literally cannot get my head around anything that is so completely partial. So utterly antithetic to the fundamental principles which make society possible. It is alien. By which I mean that it is not contained in or derived from the essential nature of human society. We simply could not live by a ‘code’ which holds justice to be the servant of prejudice. By the same token, it should be that such a pernicious ideology could not take root in society. But there is good reason to suppose that it is exerting a baneful influence at the highest levels of the Scottish Government.
There has been an unmistakably concerted effort to take Alex Salmond out of the political equation. A project which goes far beyond the bounds of even the most Machiavellian of political machinations. At any other time, this would be the kind of thing that ends political careers and brings down governments. But, like so much else, the whole thing is being buried under the major public health crisis caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. We are entitled to question whether this is acceptable.
We are told that it will be time enough to deal with this malignancy at the heart of the SNP administration once things get back to normal. But what kind of normal will there be to get back to if we do not deal with such issues? What long-term damage might be done if we turn a blind eye to possible corruption and misdeeds in our government. Just how much are we prepared to let slide as we focus on the health threat? What are we prepared to sacrifice in the name of tackling this threat? How necessary is it that we disregard political and social threats in the meantime?
Can we – should we – abrogate our responsibility to the future on account of a present, but passing, emergency?
We are told that we will emerge from the pandemic into a world that is significantly, if not massively changed. It is an undeniable fact of life that if the forces of democracy don’t manage the change then other forces will. And we may not like the society that they create.
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