you haven’t been to the cinema and missed those ads from Vote Nob Orders, and others, here’s what you’ve not been missing. It’s just a wee short spoof of what might better have been said:
Whilst we’re on the subject of that new ‘grassroots’ campaign, and as we start the regulated period in advance of the vote, have a look at this fascinating insight into the fundraising of VNB. And you know I like a good conspiracy theory, don’t you?
Enough of cinemas though, for it’s been fairly busy elsewhere of late. We’ve been voting, and we touched on council election results down south last week. But the European votes have been counted, members elected; and that brings us to UKIP. Top of the heap down south, Wales too, at least the eastern half. And a seat in Scotland. Whit? How did that happen.
Well it happened largely because the state-funded broadcaster gave the party that had no elected members more than four times the air time than it gave to the party with a landslide majority government. And you paid for that. Ultimately because these ultra-right wing loonies managed to get 140,000 people in Scotland to vote for them, more than one-third of the SNP vote and slightly higher than the Greens, we give them a seat, in our name, at Brussels.
They’ve given that mandate to a chap called David Coburn, who seems to manage, every time he opens his mouth, to make us wonder how that happened. Why?
Especially when you remember what UKIP’s Scottish leader thinks of us all:
And that their preference for Scotland is for all decisions to be made in Westminster. Still 10% of the vote here, and fourth place, is clear evidence that Scotland and England are poles apart. However it may be folly to dismiss it as a protest in a Euro election with a paltry turnout. But if that 30% UKIP vote south of the border really wants out the EU they have to vote Tory to be certain of the referendum that might make it happen. And Scotland knows that.
I attended the local count the other night, a first for me. Whilst marvelling at a smoothly managed process I was left wondering how they’ll cope counting three times as many papers in a few months time, even if they do only have to sort them into two piles.
The other thing this week has been the number crunching; who to believe. Firstly don’t forget that if the No camp is right with their £1.5bn cost of Scottish freedom then that is less than we have already paid to apparently gain freedom for Iraq and Afghanistan. Now there’s a thought isn’t it. Is Scotland’s freedom worth more or less than Iraq’s? Let’s leave it hanging for a moment. For we may return to figures, and the input of Profs. Dunleavy and Young, another day.
And underlying it all is the promise of more powers. It’s a failed promise that some of us remember from 1979. Today it’s the LibDems that say they are the ones to trust with that one. Oh yeah, here’s Gordon MacIntyre-Kemp over at BfS, reminding us of the LibDem manifesto. Remember that one?
So that takes us back to UKIP. Now with the council elections last week we were told that projections through to the Westminster election next May would give us no UKIP MPs – both from BBC and Sky. Not so sure now though are we, with 30% of the Euro vote? With the LibDems imploding by the day, decimated at the polls, where lies a coalition to give power to the party with the larger number of seats, assuming no majority? Just imagine someone like Mr Farage, or the odious David Coburn for example, holding the balance of power, a seat in Cabinet even. Unless all the UKIP voters give Cameron, or whoever is the blue tory leader at the time, an outright majority.
And think of that should Scotland decline her opportunity. No seriously, think about it. No Barnett, No Powers, No Parliament. That’s why Scotland will vote Yes. That and all the positive reasons thrashed out before. That and the desire to shape a better society, the opportunity to be better than we have become and possibly be shackled to Westminster’s corpse.
And finally, a word from across the water, the heartening tale of how others see us, in a Letter from America.