17th March 2017
There's so much more to government and the powers-that-be than any of us scurrying around on the surface realise. Who is really operating and pulling the strings is something that is purposely hidden from our sight. Reading about the Deep State in America, and probably something equivalent in the UK, makes me in a cynical moment click "Delete" on all those citizen organisations that send messages asking for help. Donald Trump isn't the real problem in America, though he is certainly an annoying little gadfly. Theresa May likewise in Britain belongs only to the surface noise. The "establishment," that old boys' club fed into by England's system of boarding schools, that British Empire still living under the delusion that such an empire exists, is the iron hand behind the doings of the United Kingdom.
It is therefore with a little trepidation that I do my dance for the newly announced Scottish Independence referendum, Mark 2. The iron hand has always put down such rebellions of the natives. After the Easter Rising in Ireland, it took the perpetrators out against the wall (even the ones too sick to stand) and shot them. It did the same thing to the Tartan Army in our own city of Paisley in 1820. More recently, during the 2014 Scottish Independence referendum, it spread misinformation so fast and efficiently, that by the time of the vote, it had half the population of Scotland cowering. It has the added weapon of a Scottish media only Scottish in name and largely published out of London. So, the irony is, that even with all other European Union members behind us, even with independent economists everywhere stating that, without the Westminster drain, Scotland could be a wealthy little nation on a par with Norway, we will still have an uphill battle. Fear is a very powerful weapon, and if you have enough Grannies scared for their next week's pension, enough farmers worried for their subsidies, enough people downtrodden over the centuries by the colonialists, and you get a vote like last time: 55% of Scots against Scotland governing itself, the only colony to actually turn down an offer of independence.
I was on the island of St. Kitts recently and was talking to our native tour guide about how the island managed to ease itself out from under British rule. It took many tries, he said. The English government way out there in the Caribbean sea, two thousand miles from its own shores, wanted to hang on. And this is an island with very few resources, one of those West Indies that the British Empire built itself upon, on the sugar plantations and slave trade. The slave trade was long gone, of course, but still the greedy fingers held on.
So, take Scotland with its vast oil fields (62% of EU reserves) and its wind power (now supplying 26% of its renewable energy to England), its wave and tidal power, its 5 billion pound whisky trade, its tourism and its very small population. The old boys club is not going to let go of that without a fight, for which lowly natives are really not equipped. They play dirty, those Empire boys and the proxies they put up in their pulpits. As was always the case, they have regard for the common people only insofar as they serve the club. Theresa May is nothing more than a barmaid, plying the old boys with (Scottish) whisky.
So, it's a bleak prospect, this quest for freedom, made even more so by the Downing Street dictate the other day that it will not permit Scotland to hold another referendum. And yet here I am again at the altar of the just and the good, with the almost ridiculous belief that Scotland shall persist and overcome.
I think somehow Scotland shall.