THE entire Westminster bloc is fearful about “losing” Scotland. It knows Brexit has made the UK (England?) the world’s laughing stock, and a successful Scotland would be too humiliating for it to bear.

Michael Russell was quite correct in his piece last week that there will be an even heavier artillery of lies launched at Scotland than in 2014, and these will be fired out incessantly. And while some of us might simply feel embarrassed on the liars’ behalf as they degrade themselves, for others, the reality is, as observers such as George Orwell highlighted, that propaganda works.

It’s been kept continually alive since 2014 in tabloids, newspapers, and the BBC, if in a sometimes low-octane way. The next stage is certainly arriving soon – in fact, we see it already with the prime ministerial candidates.

Brexit is pronounced to have provided a land of soon-to-be-delivered wealth and opportunity, and therefore, Brexit is claimed as 100% innocent of Dover queues, of lost opportunities, of diminished or lost businesses, and of providing wide disbenefit to society. That lie is the wider UK government’s – indeed, Westminster’s – official truth. For them, anyone pointing to the reality is subversive and unpatriotic, and state broadcaster the BBC avoids honest journalism to protect and promote the deceit.

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And yet, finding no positive case for Scotland continuing in the Union, maybe the lowest point of the Westminster bloc’s anti-Scottish assaults is still its deployment of the racialist “genetically deficient” argument. It is effectively the sort of stereotyping Nelson Mandela was imprisoned for being on the wrong end of and, as South Africa’s president, railed against; the justification of the unspeakable in language Adolf Hitler would have recognised. “We’re not genetically programmed, in Scotland, to make political decisions,” said Scottish-based Westminster bloc politician Johann Lamont, thereby including herself in her obscene argument.

That was in 2014. Today, we witness something different, with the disdain, posturing and scolding from prime minister candidates over how strongly, as our masters, they would discipline Scotland. They scent, want to exploit, and, by that means, amplify, anti-Scottishness within their right-wing ranks – the same people perhaps who have been misguidedly attacking France over the UK’s chosen Brexit settlement.

But maybe there is a link with 2014. Slaves – by definition, an “inferior” people in the eyes of their owners – cannot break free. The Westminster bloc says that neither can we, regardless of incontrovertible democratic mandates.

A union is what Ireland enjoys in the EU, having supportive, non-abusive partners within a collaborative framework of mutual respect, bound together in a voluntary union of democratic nations. Ours, by each of these measures, is the opposite of a modern Union.

Instead, Scotland resembles a property – which its “owner” very definitely fears losing.

Professor Aonghus MacKechnie


THE Scottish Government can’t go on asking Westminster for more cash. By doing so it just underlines the impression that we are subsidised by the rUK taxpayers.

We know that is not the case, but the electors we need to persuade to vote Yes are served a constant diet of the begging bowl.

Scotland doesn’t need to raise more money from existing taxes. Instead, it needs to abolish all existing Scottish taxes and set a zero rate for Income Tax on earned income.

It can more than replace that revenue and anything else it receives via Westminster by using our land and buildings as the source of our public funding.

When landowners contribute next to nothing in public funding from their ownership of land, and the public sector sits on 60% of vacant and dilapidated property in urban Scotland, doing nothing productive with it, there are literally billions of pounds waiting to be harvested, not just to fund public sector salary increases but to provide a decent Universal Citizens Income to transform lives and leave the UK behind.

The power lies in section 80I of the Scotland Act 1998.

Hardship for many on a scale not witnessed before is here. It demands emergency measures which put money in people’s pockets and gives them the confidence to vote for independence in the knowledge that the Scottish state-in-waiting protects their standard of living.

Graeme McCormick


WE dinnae hae the keys tae oor hoose.

It’s oor neebors in their 10 times bigger hoose that hae the keys tae oor hoose an’ decide wha’ can an’ cannae come tae stay wi’ us.

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As if that’s no bad eneugh, it’s these same neebors who tak’ maist o’ the money we mak’ an’ then decide how much they’ll gie us back tae luik efter oor hoose an’ a’ wha live here while they spend wheens o’ it oan things we dinnae want.

Seems like the Meedle Ages tae me.

But it’s no – it’s richt noo in 2022.

Nae hairm tae oor neebors – but in the name o’ democracy soart yirsels oot, back aff an’ gie the nod tae oor Referendum an’ the chance tae sort this oot wance an’ fir a’.

Otherwise ye’re amang the warst o’ the warst o’ the warld ower – base an’ shameless.

James Dippie