Election update – The Reckoning

Well the election result turned out okay(ish) in Scotland. So long as the SNP don’t let this majority go to their head and start going all “independence, independence independence :yawn:” again…largely because, like the lib dems with AV, they’ll likely be disappointed. Indeed it would be sensible for them to delay any independence referendum for as long as possible. With the threat of such a referendum hanging over them, the Tory’s down in London know they have to be on best behaviour as far as Scotland goes. While the opinion polls currently show a referendum would be lost, the one thing that could tip the scales the other way is the certain knowledge by Scots that with independence they can banish forever the spectre of nasty, penny pinching Tory governments who look on Scotland as some desolate wasteland to be exploited and forgotten about…sorry about that last line, I think I’m coming down with Culloden Fever |-|.

Either way if the SNP defer their Independence Referendum (defeat) till say 2013-14 that would mean the Scots can get away with anything for a few years with the Tories unwilling to take the budget scissors to Scotland for fear of drumming up support for independence. By 2013/14 with a general election looming around the corner and the Tories/lib dems about as popular as pig shit with the electorate, even after the Independence Referendum is defeated, they’ll be reluctant to make any serious cuts, not unless they want to get wiped out in Scotland altogether.

And speaking of getting wiped out, the Labour party and Lib dems need to assess why it was they lost and the SNP won. Its not so much Scottish independence I favour, its an independent Labour party and Liberal Democrat party in Scotland that doesn’t need permission from London to ties their own shoelaces. For example, one of the things that swung me into the SNP camp (for the FPtP seat, I voted Green with the party list) is that Labour are pro-nuclear power. While one could build a limited (and fairly weak) case for nuclear down in England, in Scotland it’s just silly. Scotland has the best renewable resources in Europe. Why build expensive nuclear reactors, dependant on fuel brought in from abroad and technical support from the French/USA, when we should be encouraging Scottish companies to exploit Scottish renewable resources? Logically, the Scottish Labour party should thus adopt an anti-nuclear position, at least in Scotland, but then they’d be challenging the hierarchy down in London.

Similarly, the only thing stopping the lib dems going into coalition with the SNP before, was the Independence issue. As individuals committed to liberal democratic values it would seem logical for the Scottish Lib dems to adopt a “neutral” stance on independence (i.e they won’t support it if it comes to a Referendum but they won’t stop the SNP proposing one). And of course if they were tactical (as the Tories clearly were when it came to AV) they could let the SNP have their bottle (and then lost the Referendum) and have gotten into government last time without much difficulty (and likely still be there right now). Again the Scottish Lib dems can’t do this because it would conflict with orders from London.

So for either of these parties to recover from this election, they need to take a leaf out of the other parties books. The Scottish Greens and Conservatives are, by and large, independent of London. They set policy appropriate to what they know will work in Scotland, rather than what the politburos down south want.

I hate being right some times, but it seems my assessment of the Socialist parties was spot on :**:. They formed themselves into 3 factions in Glasgow, split the vote and diluted one another’s support. If you look at them numbers for the Glasgow Party lists, and you add up all the socialist party votes, they could have just pipped either the Tories or Greens for the last seat. So effectively by voting Socialist (or Respect) you’d have been as well off voting Tory or Green. Well done guys! Like I said, the Socialist need to realise that they are their own worse enemies. If they could just sit down and have a sensible talk about strategy they might stand a change next time. If gorgeous George can’t get a seat in Glasgow, what chance do you think you have? Not that I’m going to complain, as the Green got in :>>!

Of course the real disappointment of the night was the failure of the AV referendum, a triumph for fear and loathing over democracy and reason :no:. We see it all the time in Ireland, inevitably both parties play the fear card, usually the one with the most to loose, as it was here with the Tories and of course their Tabloid newspaper allies do fear really well. They’ve been using fear and scare tactics to sell papers for decades by convincing a large portion of middle England that the UK is overrun with Immigrants over here to steal our jobs while live the lazy live on benefits and committing knife crime (and terrorism) in their spare time :lalala:.

An example of such scaremongering tactics, in the 1995 Irish divorce referendum (yes it took us till 1995 to pass a divorce referendum!) the way the “no” camp :crazy: went on you’d swear half the farmers wives in the country were going to be looking for a divorce the next day and taking the farm too. Of course this was complete BS. Equally, in the more recent Lisbon Treaty referendum we were told by the “no” camp that if it passed the Germans would be running the Irish economy…well okay, that one sort of happened ;D, but the rest of what the “no” lot said, about the minimum wage going down to 2 euro or us all being drafted into the EU army or being overrun with Poles and Latvians (inward migration into Ireland has since gone down not up), none of this came to pass. Indeed, the Lisbon Treaty referendum in Ireland is interesting because of the action of Nigel Farage of UKIP, he helped get the Lisbon treaty passed in Ireland. Yes, really! He was interviewed on TV in Ireland in the lead up to the Referendum and we all thought that if this little xenophobic “nice-but-dim” toff was against the EU, then we were in favour if it ;D. A rare moment of clarity. Cheer’s Nigel!

I would finally note thought, to any Labour party supporters who voted no against AV (you know who you are!) that if (and it’s a big if) Scotland does get independence, while the Scots will never have to worry about Tory governments again, England will be all but condemned to have them more regularly. Without AV and lacking the more generally left wing Scotland (and possibly Wales) in the UK it will be much harder, if not impossible, for the Labour/lib dems to gain power in the UK under the current voting system. Well done lads! Next time use you’re head to decide how you vote not what some right wing lackey of the Murdoch’s in the Sun says :wave:.


6 thoughts on “Election update – The Reckoning

  1. I think you will find that down in London there is a sizeable body of oppinion that has no probkem at all were Scotland to be indepednent.

    The argument will be over which part of its share of the national debt Scotland takes with it. No doubt the realisation that independence would mean deep cuts in the feather-bedded Scottish welfare state and an end to wage-parities in the public sector with English workers, will hurt whichever party ends up holding the baby on independence.


    • Technomist,

      Like I said, I’m at neutral on the whole independence issue and the issue of National Debt share is one of those things that would the SNP often forget to mention in their retoric. However, the fact is Dave Cameron doesn’t want to go down in history as “the PM who lost Scotland”, that is the sort of legacy he or indeed the Tories will never live down. Also remember the Oil, the last thing London wants is to loose access to that.


      • I am more than neutral, as I will be entitled to a Scottish passport if Scotland gets its independence. I just have no illusions that the place will be anything other than an economic basket case if the Scottish people don’t wean themselves off the English subsidies well in advance of the brave new dawn.


      • Scottish Passport?

        How do you qualify for one of them? Be able to recite aloud the “take our lifes” speech from Braveheart 😉

        I reckon if Scotland get independence that rather than adopting the Euro they keep the Scottish notes, but instead of the Queen they’ll have a picture of Frankie Boyle waving his fist and saying “ITS REAL FUCKING MONEY!” ;0


      • ….and I would note that to get an Irish passport you pretty much need to have once owned an Irish Setter and be able to sink a pint of the black stuff in under 30 seconds, that’s how we ended up with Jackie Charlton running the football team a few years back.


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