OK, enough’s enough, am I the only one who sees through these politicians and their completely shameless attempts to browbeat an entire nation through fear? What, in particular, has set me off on this particular rant? One day last week, I open my Courier and out jumps Danny Alexander as the latest Westminster apparatchik to take his turn in spreading bogeymen stories about Scotland and the proposed Independence Referendum.
Apparently this is “causing real uncertainty” and follows on from George Osborne claiming that “companies are being put off investing in Scotland due to fears the country will break away from the UK”. For me though it’s just the latest in what appears to be a concerted and sustained attempt to influence the Scottish electorate with scaremongering.
What uncertainty? Unlike the vague promises offered up by countless previous governments, UK and Scottish, the current Scottish government were elected on a mandate including a firm commitment to hold a referendum in the second half of this parliament. Nothing vague about that.
And is it not simply commonsense to allow plenty time for reasoned debate and considered reflection before asking the electorate to take possibly the biggest political decision in Scotland for over 300 years?
I’d have thought so, but as we listen to unionist politicians of various hues deride this plan do you not wonder, as I do, why they want us to rush this? To get rid of uncertainty? Give me a break!
Surely it’s entirely self-seeking, as they believe the polls that seem to indicate they would win if the referendum was now, before all the arguments are out in the open, digested and reflected upon. I really can’t be doing with it anymore, it’s just all so transparent. If politics isn’t about presenting your beliefs, arguing your corner then testing the outcome in an election then what is it about?
There’s been a lot of talk in recent campaigns about negative electioneering and it is widely believed that a major factor in the last two Scottish elections has been the positivity of the SNP against the constant sniping and downplaying of the other parties. Have they learned no lessons? Do they ever?
As the referendum debate gathers pace, what I would naively expect to see is reasoned political argument from those who believe in the union to try to persuade those undecided or already inclined towards independence to change their minds.
Equally I do expect to see the SNP continue to promote what Scotland can be in the future without interference from Westminster. What we do know for certain is that successive Westminster governments have consistently lied for decades about matters affecting Scotland and, specifically, about the implications of independence.
It’s all there in the public domain thanks to the 30-year rule and all that. They lied about oil, they lied about finances, and they continue to lie or at the very least peddle falsehoods and half-truths in order to mislead the Scottish electorate in order to get the result they want.
After all, if they were so convinced of their case why would they not indeed say “bring it on”, present the positive benefits of Scotland continuing within the UK and then trust their own judgement and that of the Scottish people to come to the “right” conclusion?