To a Cunning Plan Cultist…

You fall for the old ‘more is always better’ fallacy. 6 pints of beer is ALWAYS better than 1 pint of beer in your calculations. More thoughtful calculation, however, takes due account of the fact that you only have one glass. Once it is filled, the other five pints are no use to you. They end up spilt on the floor and no use to anybody.

You have decided the goal is to get as many pro-independence MSPs as possible. I have decided the goal is to get Scotland’s independence restored. We are never going to agree because your objective is not my objective. What is important to you is not important to me.

Even if your cunning plan was as cunning as the dogma claims it is, it’s a cunning plan to flood the Scottish Parliament with pro-independence MSPs. It is NOT a plan to get independence. If the outcome sought is action taken in the Scottish Parliament for the purpose of restoring Scotland’s independence then your cunning plan doesn’t do that even if it succeeds in achieving the goal that you have set – lots and lots of pro-independence MSPs. If only you were thinking in terms of restoring independence and what that requires then it would be immediately obvious that flooding Holyrood with pro-independence list MSPs does not serve that goal. In terms of what is needed to get independence, those additional pro-independence MSPs are entirely redundant. As scientists would say, they are neither necessary nor sufficient.

As I said, my priority is restoring Scotland’s independence. I am not obsessing about getting the maximum possible number of MSP’s. These are two entirely different projects. You have a cunning plan to achieve your goal. I have a very straightforward plan to achieve mine. Your cunning plan requires something not far short of a political miracle in order to succeed, and even then it succeeds only in putting more pro-independence MSPs in the Scottish Parliament. For you, that is success. My plan aims, not at flooding the chamber with indy-friendly MSP’s, but at forcing the action which brings about the restoration of Scotland’s independence. For me, success is a Scottish Government acting through the Scottish Parliament to end the Union. What I have called #ScottishUDI.

I think my goal is more important than yours. More importantly, my goal is definitely achievable while yours is only doubtfully achievable. Most importantly of all my goal gets independence. Your goal doesn’t.

You have failed to properly analyse the problem, so obviously you’ve come up with the wrong solution. You think the problem is a lack of pro-independence MSPs and that the problem can be solved with a cunning plan to get more of them. In fact, the problem is the lack of a Scottish Government with the political will and the testicular capacity to take the necessary action in the Scottish Parliament. That problem is solved, not by flooding Holyrood with pro-independence MSP’s but by a simple majority of pro-independence MSPs willing to take the necessary action.

Without that – without an SNP administration committed to #ScottishUDI in some form, all those pro-independence list MSPs can do absolutely fuck all to bring about the restoration of Scotland’s independence. Not one fucking thing! They are not SUFFICIENT. And that SNP administration needs only an overall majority of one to initiate #ScottishUDI. So your additional list MSPs are not NECESSARY.

Again, the Yes movement most certainly has a part to play. On one thing the cunning plan cultists are correct. I totally agree that, as things stand, the SNP cannot be relied upon to initiate #ScottishUDI. THAT is what we have to change. NOT the number of MSPs in favour of #ScottishUDI. So long as that number is one more than the British parties squatting in Scotland’s Parliament, we’re golden! Only the Yes movement has the potential political clout to force the SNP to commit to #ScottishUDI prior to the next Holyrood elections. And the Yes movement’s potential to do this can only be realised if it speaks with one voice and does not divert any of its energies to any cunning plans.



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39 thoughts on “To a Cunning Plan Cultist…

  1. The good thing about your analysis is that your ‘What’ and ‘How’ are clear and distinct. What you want is Independence/Union Dissolved and your How is to make the SNP in government do what they are supposed to.

    I think you are being unfair on the list party advocates by suggesting that their What is more MSP’s. That is actually their How. Their What is the same as yours.

    One of the problems could that the SNP are likely to tank once Indy is obtained, especially with the resentment building up among Indy supporters. So it is natural organisational self preservation to put off any actual moves towards Indy and stay on the safe ground of good government. And I for one believe that the Salmond trial indicates that the [careerist wing of the] SNP is looking to preserve a comfort zone.

    So to one extent you are right, the fight is within the SNP You are possibly even more right if the list party advocates force the [careerist wing of the] SNP to dig in to maintain their comfort zone.
    But equally, I can see your How’ of forcing the [careerist wing of the] SNP to get on with it failing, at which point the list party approach becomes the only one available.

    In essence, the list party advocates are voting with their feet for the proposition that your approach has failed, but then you can argue your approach has not really been tried, because although it has been clear to some that there is a problem with the SNP, it is only lately that the shape of the problem has really begun to emerge. And I don’t think we fully know exactly what we are dealing with, although I think we do know the major possibilities.

    And I must say for myself, while I would do the doors for another 5 years of good government in 2021, I might be not do it at all if I come to believe that the [careerist wing of the] SNP is poised to betray my overriding objective of Indy. It all depends on whether a good fight within the SNP can be had and won well before Holyrood 2021.

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      1. No. You have only established that their How is not your What. While you are quite clear about your How and What, you are either misrepresenting their What or confusing their How and What. Having said that, I think it could be valid to accuse the List party advocates of being overly focussed on their own version of How.

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      2. I really am weary of trying to explain this to people who can’t even see the fucking dots never mind join them. Figure it out. Or fuck it up. I suspect you’ll be quite pleased with yourself either way. Exchange is ended.

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      3. “I really am weary of trying to explain this to people who can’t even see the fucking dots never mind join them. Figure it out. Or fuck it up. I suspect you’ll be quite pleased with yourself either way. Exchange is ended.”

        Your failure is not a failure to explain. It is a failure to be explained to. You proclaim yourself “Thinker. Listener. Talker. Reader. Writer.” I’ll damn you with faint praise and give you 80%.

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  2. Excellent summation Peter, I’ve been asking the question about the lack of direct action for years now. We have an administration maskarading as “the” Scottish Government and like the Tories they promise much, but deliver very little in the way of progress towards its alleged ultimate objective of Independence. Despite the minor successes of competent administration, without Independence, the Scottsih Government is merely balm on a very old and ancient sore.

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  3. Well explained Peter, not something I’d thought of.

    Yes, unlike Sputnik above I’ve read a lot of the arguments, the postings, of people who want some sort of new list party to “increase the number of pro-indy MSPs”, all of whom incidentally deny it would lose the SNP any seats despite the SNP getting 16 on the list in 2011 to give an OVERALL majority, and 4 even in 2016 – and none of them has explained HOW this will help Indy. Apparently it will magically appear just because, errr, raisins.

    Don’t agree with the UDI thing or the dissolve thing. The only valid reason for a UDI is to hold a referendum to test that a majority of the Scottish People want Indy, otherwise it could be the minoprity forcing the majority which is not a democracy. And as for dissolution it’s only one of the three techincal ways of becoming independence, the others being secession and separation. Why limit ourselves to only one option when the best is likely to be way better than going back to the 18th century in effect!

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      1. Oh dear, I can see I need a mug of tea and wifemade tablet to have the patience to explain it all to you.

        Well Peter now it’s mug of tea in hand, here we go. The “U” of “UDI” of your #ScottishUDI means “Unilateral” i.e. one-sided. Now, the problem with “one-sided” is that only one side is doing it, hence “Unilateral”, the other side if there are two sides might not accept it. They might resist! Which means the other 196 countries in the world might decide not to accept the other bit – the DI – the “Declaration of Independence”.

        When there are two parties, it is better to have “Bilateral” agreement, thouugh techincally there is no term called “BDI” or “Bilateral Declaration of Independence”. It’s still possible that the other 196 countries in the world might not accept that Independence, but far more likely.

        As for “dissolve” as in your #DissolveTheUnion you may have forgotten about, you may not be aware that that is just one of three or more LEGAL methogs of “ending the Union” as you say, and which of course is what all of us want to do, one way or another. In your rush to reply you may have missed this from my posting “the others being secession and separation”. So despair ye not, all three could lead to Independence, the question as always, is which is the best route?

        There are many expert constitutionalist articles about both these points, the UDI and the 3 or more methods. One of the best around is from Aidan O’Neill, the very same QC representing the S30 Action group. And indeed one of the problems with “dissolution” is that even if agreed between the two parties, Scotland and the rUK, it is STILL possible some or even all of the 196 countries won’t accept it – one of the consequences is that treaties and agreements with organisations such as the CWC, NATO, the UN, WTO, the World Bank, would all disappear (technically) for both Scotland AND the rUK with a dissolution that amounted to a reversion to the pre-1707 state for both countries. Indeed it is possible England would still be at war then with half the world. Not much change there then.

        Particularly read 5.3 to 5.6 of the following:

        https://publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201012/cmselect/cmscotaf/1608/1608we16.htm

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      2. I got to the bit where you were explaining to me the meaning of a term which I coined and burst out laughing. I didn’t read any more. You’re never going to top that.

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      3. Your loss. Considering you made that reply at 13.41 where you complain about me defining your “UDI” and then your comment about my mistake you made at 13.43 – do you have memory problems?

        But I would advise you to read to the end, it;s very clear you actually do NOT understand your own hashtag, and you are thereofre misleading any poor soul who puts any trust in you.

        Bye now sweetie X

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    1. Following UDI it would interesting to see how many in Scotland want a referendum to ask if we should return to a Union with England. More importantly I cannot imagine how England would sell such a notion if only because they see Scotland as subservient and would have difficulty continuing to hide the fact. I have to agree that the endless knots we are told to untie before Independence can be considered ‘legal’ is diversion and distraction. Independence is independence, nobody hands it to you like a prize in a competition.

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      1. It should be clearly understood that there MUST be a referendum. There are some who say this is not necessary. I am not one of them. The people of Scotland are sovereign. No constitutional change can happen without their consent. It is not the absolute requirement for a referendum which is in question but the form of that referendum and the nature of the process leading to it. The order of events, if you will.

        #ScottishUDI simply refers to whatever bold and decisive action may be required to initiate and progress a process by which Scotland’s independence is restored. A Scottish process. A process made and managed in Scotland. A process which excludes and prohibits any external interference most particularly by the British state.

        #ScottishUDI is us ‘getting indy done’ the way it should be. The way it must be.

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      2. No Peter, UDI in Constitutional terms always stands for Universal Declaration of Independence, and has done since Rhodesia. It does not mean whatever you might want it to mean – not to other people anyway.

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      3. No it fucking doesn’t you ignorant arrogant arsewipe! It stands for UNILATERAL Declaration of Independence. Now fuck off and stop making a total arse of yourself.

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      4. So I made a msitake – I did say Unilateral in my first posting.

        But yes you totally rude small dickhead I will fuck off and leave you in your shit-stained ignorance.

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  4. yesindyref2: the way it will help will be to try and force the SNP to actually do what it was instituted to do. Okay, I agree that it could blow up in our faces, but lack of courage should not be allowed to stand in the way of forward movement. Presently, there are four mandates. If 2021 becomes yet another – and without any push to the SNP, it will – what do you suggest? How do we make the SNP shift because it is not interested in anything the YES movement might say or do; it has become entrenched. There is only one way to force momentum within the SNP and that is to threaten their hegemony in Scotland, even if just a little bit. Pete Wishart’s/Alyn Smith’s and others’ repeated attempts to derail any real opposition to the ‘we’re fine and cosy right here, don’t rock the boat’ attitude is testament to that. They would probably be quite happy to cruise along at their own pace, doing a decent enough job domestically. In that sense, the SNP has become a British party with a bit of a snarl, that’s all. Perhaps I am mistaken in that, and, if so, I apologize to those gentlemen, but that is how their attitude comes across to the ordinary punter.

    What more and more want is a radical party that is willing to stand up to the British State. There are some within the SNP who would do that, and some are even at Holyrood, but they seem to be swamped by ‘careerists’ who want to take the long way round. The problem is that more and more grass roots people are seeing that the long route round is not an option, not after Brexit. We need to get our skates on because the only way that Brexit can work for the UK, as a whole, is if Scotland,, in particular, is silenced and reduced. If England-as-the-UK wanted England alone to Brexit, they’d have done that and left us high and dry, but that was never the plan. They want us with them – at any cost to the Scots and Scotland – for reasons that should be obvious. So, the SNP’s stasis and working within the system is a cul de sac, a dead end that will see us become a region of a Greater England – indeed, that is what Westminster and Whitehall believed, and still believe, we are, anyway. That is why they will never grant a S30 Order again, why they will not respect any other pre referendum result, why they must reduce our devolved powers.

    Playing within the system was never an option; a second indyref was never an option; stopping Brexit was never an option. All this, the SNP must have known, but they wasted years in trying to convince us – and themselves – that it was. However democratic you think a pre independence referendum to be, it is not – emphatically not – a pre-requisite for independence. The SNP’s hand must be forced to force them forward. Maybe another indy party can do that; maybe it will be a damp squib. The SNP should be grateful that it is only in the List that this new party is challenging, but that can happen, too in the FPTP ballot, if they continue the way they are going. It has happened in numerous countries seeking their independence that other, far more radical parties arise when independence stalls.

    The SNP should take that on board and start thinking about putting independence as their main manifesto policy in 2021. If the polls show a severe dip in their support before the polls, the new party could stand down candidates that are likely to take away votes where the SNP candidate is more likely to gain a seat. That is precisely how the Unionists work together to achieve majority representation and bellowing voice out of minority votes. They have won nothing as individual parties or groupings in Scotland for years, but their loud-mouthed anti independence stance is awarded a status that it does not deserve. Now that, is anti democratic when we have international law in our favour. It is a crying shame that so many still adhere to another indyref that could take years to come to fruition, or never actually come to fruition, and which would still have to be won. Persuasion is possible only where people are open to persuasion. There is something of the severe Presbyterian about it all that, like keeping a scourge in your top drawer to salivate over in th imagination. When flat Earth-ism was the orthodoxy, it was only when ships sailed to the ends of the Earth and did not fall off into space that the many were finally convinced, and that took centuries.

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    1. The way I see another pro-indy party Lorna is as pressure BEFORE the election next year, pressure to force the SNP to make it and Indy Ref 2 (with and without an S30) number 1 in their manifesto. You’ll know about the S30 Action Group. Well, people like Aileen McHarg had said it’s a bad idea to take it to court, even though she was one of the goup “Gavin Anderson et al” back in 2012 that said we could hold a referendum without Westminster’s permission – and she hasn’t changed her mind. Her argument and the same for others, is that it could go either way and meantime it’s useful as a bluff.

      https://ukconstitutionallaw.org/2012/01/31/gavin-anderson-et-al-the-independence-referendum-legality-and-the-contested-constitution-widening-the-debate/

      Well I think it’s been useless as a bluff, neither May nor BoJo have caved in to it so far, so we may as well have it in court and found either way. And indeed that court case is going ahead even though the other side asked for a further delay becuase of Covid-19 – that was rejected. So we will know by about September / October either way.

      Getting back to that other party, if the SNP do NOT make it very clear in their manifesto that Independence is front and centre AND Indy Ref 2 if not held before, the SNP will lose BOTH my votes and we’ll probably emigrate to Ireland (emigrate for me, return for wife). At least they have sphericals in Ireland.

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    2. The way I see another pro-indy party Lorna is as pressure BEFORE the election next year, pressure to force the SNP to make it and Indy Ref 2 (with and without an S30) number 1 in their manifesto. You’ll know about the Peoples S30 Action Group. Well, people like Aileen McHarg had said it’s a bad idea to take it to court, even though she was one of the goup “Gavin Anderson et al” back in 2012 that said we could hold a referendum without Westminster’s permission – and she hasn’t changed her mind. Her argument and the same for others, is that it could go either way and meantime it’s useful as a bluff.

      Well I think it’s been useless as a bluff, neither May nor BoJo have caved in to it so far, so we may as well have it in court and found either way. And indeed that court case is going ahead even though the other side asked for a further delay becuase of Covid-19 – that was rejected. So we will know by about September / October either way.

      Getting back to that other party, if the SNP do NOT make it very clear in their manifesto that Independence is front and centre AND Indy Ref 2 if not held before, the SNP will lose BOTH my votes and we’ll probably emigrate to Ireland (emigrate for me, return for wife). At least they have sphericals in Ireland.

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      1. yesindyref2: I take on board what you are saying, and, while I am personally not in favour of an indyref – never was – if it works and we win, I can have no objections. Even if we get the legal permission to hold an indyref without a S30 Order, and I doubt that the Supreme Court would allow it, partly because of precedent and partly because it specifically cuts out the constitutional principal in all this, the Head of State in Parliament (we have already lost on that score), we still have to win it. We still have to persuade the Flat Earthers. Mr Bell is saying that we can dissolve the Union (through the Claim of Right and Scottish Sovereignty of the People) and I would agree with him under Scots Law, specifically Scottish Constitutional Law, but it does not apply to ‘British’ (English) Constitutional Law inasmuch as the Claim of Right was used in 1998/99 only via the vehicle of the UK Parliament; in other words, we have never been able to breach that wall of solid English-origin constitutional bricks to act independently on our own constitutional principles.

        The simple truth is that England-as-the-UK will never agree to anything in the domestic political/legal sphere unless it is agreed with England-as-the-UK first. That leaves us nowhere to go except to the international courts. We would have that right via the Charter and even the human rights legislation, but our salvation, I believe – have always believed – lies in resiling the Treaty with which we entered the Union. The truth of the matter will become obvious when England decides to invoke the Treaty, claiming that we are subsumed and that, therefore, all our assets are theirs, that devolution is in their gift only and can be withdrawn, and, by then, it will be too late for us. Why a party whose raison d’être is independence would not have a unit dedicated to constitutional law and international constitutional law is odd, but it might be a matter of finance; all the ways out of the Union should have been examined in close detail, all the pitfalls, all the dead ends. I can understand why Nicola Sturgeon opted to follow the dead end of Brexit – for the very reason I stated earlier, that she must know that England never intended to Brexit alone or without our assets and resources. Better to get the whole UK to remain than risk a furious UKG dismantling Scotland. That, however, is coming in any case.

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  5. Allow me to explain something about the term UDI. It stands, not for Universal Declaration of Independence as some utter clown claimed while presuming to explain to me what it meant, but for Unilateral Declaration of Independence. And far from having some fixed, well-established and well-understood definition as well as some standing in international constitutional law, the term is utterly meaningless.

    Think about it. (That is a genuine plea!) Let’s not trouble ourselves with the word ‘independence’. Let’s assume everybody ‘knows what it means’, at least in the sense of being satisfied with what it means to them. Let’s just accept that nations become independent. That this represents a change in their constitutional status.

    Which brings us to the word ‘declaration’. I ask you! How would the world know that a nation had become independent if no declaration were made? How would the nation’s intention to change its status be notified (or declared) without a declaration?

    Then there’s the word that the clown got stuck of, ‘unilateral’. The dictionary defines this as meaning ‘involving only one part or side’. So, the Unilateral Declaration of Independence means nothing more than a nation declaring its independence. That is all. How might independence come about absent a declaration? How might that declaration be anything other than unilateral given that no nation can possibly declare independence on behalf of another nation?

    The term has been hung about with negative associations by the British propaganda machine. This was part of its response to Rhodesia’s UDI in 1965. It is now 2020. And this is Scotland. Why we should continue to be bound by those negative associations is a mystery to me. I guess some people just luuurrrv their British propaganda.

    The term #ScottishUDI was coined by myself to describe bold decisive action by the Scottish Government and Parliament to restore Scotland’s independence through a process owned and managed entirely in Scotland and rigorously excluding Westminster involvement. That is all. If anybody tells you you must be a racist because you said UDI, you are legally permitted to set them on fire. The law may soon be reformed to make involuntary immolation compulsory in such cases.

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    1. Allow me to explain that people make typing errors, my postgs are full of them. But I very very clearly defined the “U” as Unilateral in my post at 13.30, even saying that was as opposed to a “B” as in “Bilateral”. So blatanatnly obioiusly to anyone who has half a brain cell (not you clearly), my posting 8 minutes later at 13.38 was a mistype.

      But hey, if you want to salvage having been told politely in ,y first postings that you’re talking mince with your #ScottishUDI term, then don’t let me trample your false pride and lack of debating principles.

      And UDI is always UDI – Unliateral Declaration of Independence.

      it is NOT whatever nonsense you might want to pretend it is to feed your unjustified self-importance.

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  6. Re FORCING the SNP SG to do SOMETHING I proposed last year on WOS that instead of AUOB holding marches in support of independence AUOB should have held marches HEADLINED , FORCE NS and the SNP to either call a referendum or take the wm govt to the ICJ , just think those hundreds of thousands of people marching and objecting me included to the pedestrianisation may have illustrated to NS that we are no longer willing to be marched up hills only for US to be shepherded back down again , needless to say that proposal was poo- pood by the many SNP members who were convinced Nicola had a GRAND secret plan , and we ALL know how that turned out

    IMO hundreds of thousands of people MAY , I SAY MAY have had a better impact on decisions rather than a small representation of YES officials , this could /can still be achieved depending on the outcome of Covid , if the AUOB formally announced just now to hold a March in Edinburgh in late August to PROTEST NS’s handling of the independence forward movement and demanded that NS either name a date before May 2021 for a referendum AND IMMEDIATELY ratify Scots sovereignty through the ICJ or STAND DOWN as the leader of independence

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  7. This whole article is a load of bunkum, as it’s clear that you still can’t see the essence of the ”cunning plan” and are still falling into the SNPBaad trap.

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  8. Seriously disappointed at this article and your response to those who question it.
    We know that we are a very broad church and there’s plenty of us who have had enough of the pace at which the SNP are going with the constitutional issue.
    I have supported the idea of another pro-Indy mainstream party for a while, so I’m pleased to see that it’s finally happened. It remains to be seen whether I can support their entire agenda, but there’s a reason for that. It’s early days.
    You may not realise this but the ISP were effectively bumped into announcing their formation by one of those SNP party idiots who like to shout Terf at women who question them. That’s the reason why they don’t seem ready.
    I am heartened however to see the reaction to them. There seems to be a great deal of support and the somewhat vicious reaction of some only serves to confirm that a fair few are not happy. Many of those that aren’t happy are exactly the sort of people who don’t see Independence as their priority. That includes a hefty chunk of the SNP.

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  9. I’m genuinely shocked at the rancour on this thread between people who ultimately share the same goal …. Scottish independence. Debate does not need to descend into a shouting match.

    Mr Bell clearly has his own take on how independence can be achieved. He wants a UDI. However, he also says a referendum is also essential. While the two are not mutually exclusive, I would genuinely like him to explain how the two go together in his preferred route to Indy. Not out of mischief but from a genuine desire to know.

    In my mind (probably born out of the reasons Mr Bell gives above), UDI has its own problems in that it requires the “parent state” (other definitions may be available) and the rest of the World to accept it. Otherwise you can end up in a Catalonia situation with sundry other negative consequences such as the suspending of the Scottish Parliament. I, personally, would rather avoid that (though history shows such actions can lead to the very thing the “parent state” sought to avoid).

    It may be that Mr Bell only sees UDI as a declaration of Scotland’s right to choose whether it is to become independent or lapse back into the suffocating arms of the Union (bit of bias showing there). Which is where the referendum would come in. Basically writing our own “S30” order without asking Westminster’s permission. I could go along with that.

    However, would that UDI be “forever” even if Scotland voted against Indy? More or less telling rUK that we’re only here as long as it suits us and if your not good to us we’ll just write another “S30” order and be offski. Or will we have to make a UDI each time we want a referendum? I can’t see Westminster agreeing to that if the initial referendum was lost. They’d likely demand assurances that no such actions would be taken for quite some time, if ever, and shut down the Holyrood Parliament if those assurances were not given.

    I would genuinely like Mr Bell to spell out his route to independence through UDI and how the possible pitfalls I foresee would be negotiated. Not out of a belief he is wrong, but out of a genuine desire to know if he is right.

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  10. I watched Ghandi last night.

    He won because his nation and its people were obviously enslaved and occupied . He won peacefully because his people went on strike when British authority battered and killed them.

    He did not need seats in government. He simply needed to break the system. The SNP have thus far failed to break the system. Even when given 3 majorities. It strikes me that having 129 Msps would still not deliver independence. It’s what happens in the country outside that matters.

    When Nicola asked for a section 30. She knew it would be refused. She said the WM refusal would not stand. Then it did and nothing happened.

    Democracy died and she was left pissing in a headwind. But what really happened? I suspect Nicola thought that Scots would take to the streets, go on strike rebel against the London government.

    In other words. She thought the people would do her job for her. It didn’t happen because Scots are not tangibly enslaved. We have a pretence of democracy, a vote, passports, paid jobs, seats in WM. We are not like Indians. Our serfdom is more subtle.

    Nicola is still waiting for a tsunami that will never come. So something needs to change. Winning another majority will lead to more bleating and complaining, but no action.

    Salmond understood what made the Scots tick. He was a rabble rouser. He could lead. I don’t think Nicola understands how to create an unstoppable movement. She can win majorities, but she can’t make people take to the streets to destroy British rule.

    We will not get independence until we break the system.

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  11. I agree it’s a combination of people and government. However what if the government don’t understand the people. How do we get leaders who will not just sit comfortably on salaries.

    It was inevitable the rot would set in with the SNP. Like all parties they get too comfortable and too complacent.

    Having said that. I think simple tactics destroyed Nicola’s chances of winning independence. She took some wrong decisions at the wrong time.

    Now she is hamstrung. I can’t see her changing.

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    1. Having read the link you gave me, I am “teetering on the brink” (my new favourite phrase) of accepting it. However, it is what happens afterwards that concerns me.

      “The government of England-as-Britain may denounce it as illegal. In fact, it almost certainly will. But neither the UN nor the EU nor any of the international community will echo the rUK’s denunciation because they would have no grounds for doing so. The indignant outrage of British Nationalists has no standing in international law.”

      Did the Catalonian Govt not follow the UDI route though? They held a referendum amid violent Spanish Govt action, won it, declared independence …. then went to jail. Meanwhile the international community just looked skywards while shuffling their feet and whistling a tuneless tune. What is to stop a right wing, British-exceptionalist Tory Govt in Westminster from ignoring it all and just following the Spanish precedent?

      Granted you stated;

      ““But what if it all goes wrong?”, I hear you wail. What if it does? We will certainly be no worse off than we would be if we didn’t make the effort.”

      It is this that keeps me pretty much on-side with the plan. However, I can see the attraction of the SNP’s gradualist (albeit glacial) approach for many people. It seeks to put the fact of Scottish Independence beyond legal doubt and rUK reprisal. As you claim though, such a slowly-slowly-catchee-monkey strategy may never see independence realised.

      Both approaches ask us to gamble with no guarantee either will win.

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      1. There is no meaningful comparison between Catalunya and Scotland. The constitutional circumstances are too different.

        The gradualist approach cannot possibly work because it relies on our opponents being equally lackadaisical about their own efforts. Any strategy that does not take account of a highly restricted time-frame is fantasy politics. In fact, as I think I said, we have to treat the next Holyrood election as our last chance.

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