Sunday, April 28, 2019

For some time I have believed and stated that Sturgeon is, by her nature, a manager and not a visionary who would use every opportunity available to take Scotland out of the union.
It should be pretty clear by now that her super-cautious approach ensures that she will never dare to move against the British establishment and its Deep State. We know them all too well to have to explain why Scotland's institutions from its government down, are so deeply intertwined with Britain's that nothing short of wholesale destruction and a new beginning from scratch could ever free Scotland of those ties.
That is why I believe Sturgeon would choose an end to the impossible dilemma of preparing for a putative referendum which, by her own acknowledged rules of needing first to obtain a Section 30 Order from Westminster, she can never expect to be held. That is why I find myself agreeing unexpectedly with Stephen Daisley in the Spectator when he suggests that the FM is taking us all for a ride.
Those few who bothered to watch in its entirety the FM's Ministerial Statement last Wednesday may have noticed her reply to Liberal Democrat, Mike Rumbles, on his comments about federalism.
Replying to Rumbles she said, "We cannot unilaterally turn the UK into a federal country. That requires the UK government ... I will leave Mike Rumbles to continue to beaver away to try at some point to deliver federalism and I will be the first to congratulate him for it."
Now, admittedly she also observed in that reply the sheer futility of anyone trying to persuade the WM government to take federalism seriously. They don't and they never have. The UK establishment and its government appear to suffer from a clinical pathology in its inability and mulish refusal to understand the most basic principles of federalism.
Sturgeon's reply should be understood in that context and her promise to congratulate Rumbles be nothing more than sarcasm. But I cannot help detect just a hint of wishful thinking in that reply saying "We cannot unilaterally turn the UK into a federal country. That requires the UK government."
Was there the teeniest suggestion there that she would be open to multilateral talks on federalism along the lines of her open invitation to have cross-party talks with the unionists as well as holding a Citizen's Assembly on Scotland's constitutional future?
Certainly, Craig Murray, an ex-UK Ambassador and far more experienced political commentator than I seems to have when, last Wednesday, he tweeted:
"Sturgeon's 'Citizen's Assembly' will do nothing to advance the cause of Independence, but fumble around looking for federalist compromise. Establishment controlled, it will achieve nothing because designed to kick the Indy can 2 more years down the road."
Taking her speech in its entirety, interpreting her invitation for cross-party talks with unionists and a citizen's assembly on Scotland's constitutional future I can only arrive at the conclusion that her 'update' last Wednesday was really nothing to do with preparations for another referendum on independence.
It was something else entirely: while preparing a legislative framework for another referendum of sorts (with no question decided upon to put to the electorate) the speech was really an open invitation for cross-party talks and the creation of a citizen's assembly. Nothing more.
So before Sturgeon's followers become too excited about another referendum having been announced they should sit down, take a few deep breaths, and listen to or read what she actually said. Wishful thinking, as we all should know by now, has only led us down a road to nowhere.

Tuesday, April 23, 2019


On my first reading Nicola Sturgeon's recent article in the National, This Plan is Ambitious AND Credible - it can win us Independence, (I will re-read it just in case I missed something) and apart from being worn-out by its length what most struck me is how Sturgeon's lawyer's mind is able to spin out bullshit ad nauseam and where we really learn nothing new.
A certain popular indy commentator (whose broadcasts I normally respect) got very excited about Sturgeon's puff piece over Easter, especially about her vague promises for a new currency. These promises are nothing new; they were made weeks ago in an attempt to appease the SNP membership some who were gearing up to oppose the disgraceful 'Growth' Report.
So why are informed indy commentators making such a big deal about it now? Perhaps because they are desperately looking around to comment on some good news emanating from the FM when in the real world there is none?
Sturgeon intends to go ahead with Wilson's neoliberal proposals, Sterlingization, the Six Tests and the ill-termed Solidarity Payment. And this piece in the National is nothing more than a suitably-couched declaration that nothing has changed, she's the boss and the rest of us had better shut it and eat up our cereal.
She glibly compares an independent Scotland's sterlingization to the early Ireland whose economy only ever began to flourish after the ditching of Sterling, not before it. She also tries to perform the impossible by assuring us that the Wilson proposals are 'only a framework and menu of options', that they are not exhaustive but prescriptive!
Well, if that's really true then why bother to push them in the first place in the place of something more dynamic to really address the needs of a young Scottish economy, our widespread poverty and a New Green Deal?
'There will be no austerity' she promises us while pushing for a fiscal policy that is ALL about the swingeing implementation of an extremely harsh Tory austerity. Tell people one thing and do the very opposite :(
So what is it to be, Nicola? Because it can't be both things at once. Or is that what you have convinced yourself can happen, you can have your neoliberal cake and eat it while the rest of the poor in this country nourish themselves on thoughts of How wonderful your new Neoliberal Scotland will be?
Somehow I can't see any of that happening and I really can't see the SNP Conference buying it either. Because if they do, not only would we be seeing a party which was considered Centre Left under Alex Salmond's management lurch violently to the Centre Right but a confirmation that Sturgeon's intentions for a New Scotland are really nothing at all but much more of the same old (but tartanized) Tory politics from which we are desperately hoping to escape :(
But to end on an encouraging note which is specifically aimed at the cyber-bullies who we all know and love. Your Leader has this to say to you:
"Vigorous debate is healthy and we should never shy away from new ideas. Being able to have these debates openly and honestly, and accommodate different views, is a strength of our movement, not a weakness."
Now there's a challenge!

Sunday, March 24, 2019

I can see where Sturgeon's priorities lie: she is primarily concerned about the devastating effect Brexit will have on Scottish jobs and the economy. That's perfectly understandable for any responsible politician.
It also fits in with her managerial outlook on government which is to her almost all-consuming. She is a manager by nature, not someone with a vision to campaign for independence as did Alex Salmond.

Her whole style of governance points to where the technocrats are given preference over the old-style politics which Salmond was brought up on. And that is where there is the disconnect between her and many of us in the Indy Movement.
I believe that is a major reason behind the way she keeps our movement at arm's length. She needs us because, without us, she has no real power-base to be getting on with. But her instincts are to woo her fellow technocrats and the privileged classes of Scotland because that's where home is to her.
As for the rest of us, she's taking us for granted; a great mistake which could well be fatal for her at the next Holyrood elections.
Where independence is concerned, she is taking a slow, gradualist approach, anticipating that a GE is in the offing, hoping to form an alliance with Corbyn to obtain the granting of an S30 from him instead.

In that scenario she will lay herself open to the 'federalist' moves currently being promoted through WM. She would be much more at home with federalist 'home-rule' than leaving the union

Thursday, March 14, 2019


On Tuesday night last, having just done a show on The Last Jacobite/Rebel Radio show I checked on FB to see what comments were coming in. And I found this:

G.H: We don't even control or have a country of our own... But fuckwits like you, are determined to make sure that never happens... People like you are total TRAITORS... If you dont want to be Scottish get to fuck out of my Country!!!

This was on my own Timeline where I had posted a meme which read:

I will never vote for the SNP again while the Murrells are controlling it

 for this  G.H. called me a traitor, of being un-Scottish and advised me to 'get the fuck' out of 'his' country!

Now, while I know nothing about G.H. he will know very little about me. I can hear the desperation behind his impatience and anger. But the judgmentalism and condemnation smacks of unreformed Calvinism.

G.H. won't know that I have lived in Scotland for 33 years, he won't know that for some of those years I served as a regional councillor in the Highlands, during which time I did everything I could to serve and honour my promises to the electorate of Nairn Alltan.

He won't know that I used to keep a list of those promises in front of my office desk and ticked them off, one by one,  as the promises were kept. He won't know that in November 1991 I led the blockade of a nuclear waste convoy heading to cross the Kessock Bridge in Inverness on its way from Germany to be stored at Dounreay.

And he won't know about the pensioner who promised to vote for me if I banged the drum for him if elected. Something that I promised him I would certainly do. And on being elected that the Daily Record carried a picture of me on the swings near the Nairn Swimming Pool describing me as The Green Jacobite!

And he certainly wouldn't know that on my return to council business after the nuclear blockade I found a vile racist note in my councillor's pigeon-hole whose sentiments were not very different to his described above. And of the constant use of racist language aimed at me, behind my back, by certain councillors. So bad that I had to report the Highlands only declared Tory, a Mr Graham, to the council Convener who gave that 'highland gentleman' a warning about his obnoxious behaviour.

The interesting thing was this: until the time of that blockade most of the other 50 or so councillors treated me as a clown or, being a Eurasian, as a bit of an olive-skinned curiousity. And being a Highland Green they never failed to make parochial comments to me about the Green Welly-Boot brigade 'incomersh' amongst whom I clearly was not one!

In the 'nineties the Greens were responsible for conducting a mini-uprising of the people of Nairn. Local folk were concerned about things like the pollution of the River Nairn, the filthy state of a sewage-covered Nairn beach, the illegal burning of highly toxic chemicals by Nontox and the secret dumping of poison by the same company into the local burns not far from that factory. People were getting ill with headaches.

These and the wider problem at Inverness' dumping raw sewage into the Meikle Firth and the iniquitous Poll Tax were some of the issues I promised to address and did.
Nine Greens stood for election, all through the Great Glen. But only I managed to break the Highland establishment and get elected. Much of that success I attribute to the kids at Nairn Academy who, on discovering that a Green was standing for the council, pestered their parents to vote for me. We adults should never underestimate our children. For it is the same planetary awareness that is now driving the Extinction Rebellion movement, also started by young people. Many young folk are tuned into the needs of the Planet and its biosystem. And they are aware of the world around them in a way that, sadly, only a few adults are. And I see that dearth of awareness on the nationalist Yes pages where Greens are, only too often, mocked and treated with derision.

Nationalism seems to be almost a religious thing among many, whereas green and 'environmental' issues are almost the politics of fancifulness and even of English 'incomers' dancing to the tune set them by an English headquarters somewhere in the home counties! Well, I can only put that down to the sheer, pig ignorance of some who, while turning their nationalism into a quasi-religious thing headed by an imagined Saviour who will take us all into the Promised Land, but where the land and seas and all the life that lives in and around us is a thing of little or no concern to them.

I believe it is that same insensitive, unaware attitude that leads our 90-minute patriots to a frenzy of anger and hate against their fellow Scots, calling them 'traitors' and telling them to get out of the country. Their inability to understand anything more than a cult of follow-my-leader boils down to a basic political illiteracy fuelled by an ill-concealed attitude of racism between their 'purity' and the barely-tolerated 'incomers' who they see are here on sufferance!

That is where fanaticism leads you to: an intolerance of others who you see as less-deserving of being Scots. And every time I receive abuse on the Yes pages on social media it is that fanaticism I see lurking behind the words. Fanaticism of the kind that leads to fascism.

Many of us see ourselves as socialists. I see myself as a Green Socialist. And there are many in the SNP who consider themselves to be socialist or socialistic in outlook. Very few, surely, who would go anywhere near the fanatics. Not consciously or deliberately anyway. Fanaticism and fascism is a thing we all find repugnant and not to be made welcome in our New Scotland.

And yet, and yet.

Look at the intolerance and abuse on the social media. And the anger and self-righteousness in some of us as being either 'true' Scots or traitors who need to go back to where they came from? I'm not talking here of something that goes on between nationalists and unionists; it's about what's passing between people on the same side: people who all want independence in order to make our country into a far better place than it could possibly be while being in its present neo-colonial state.

But there is this thing: political illiteracy, which requires us all to have a monolithic view, of toeing party lines and dishing out abuse at those who deviate from our imagined norms of acceptability. And that's where you find the poison of exceptionalism and race hatred; all the things that most normal humans will hold their nose and turn away from. Not among Jock Tamson's bairns are such to be found.

And yet, and yet.

Here they come in their almost goose-stepping arrogance, anger and intolerance.

Here they come, following their Saviour and boasting nationalistic purity, ready for another kind of cleansing; if yer no wi' us, yer agin us and I judge yer ter be agin us for not following our Leader! Oh boy! What are the rest of us letting ourselves in for??

Is this the New Scotland we wish to see come about? Where there is one view and only one, where those of a different view (however slight it may be) are simply not to be tolerated, to be made into non-persons? And how do we deal with this home-grown fascism that thrives all around us among the fanatics?

Monday, March 11, 2019

I probably sound old saying it but this New SNP is very different to the old one I remember 30 years ago. As it has grown larger it has taken on folk from Blair's Labour and they have succeeded in leaving their Blairite mark on the party.
There is a lot of intolerance amongst what I suspect is predominantly the new membership. That's very different to the old SNP which was full of folk with different and often very radical, opposing views.
During that time I have seen the SNP leadership taking the SNP evermore to the Right, no doubt to get support from the 'great and the good'. But the price it has had to pay for this is the loss of its erstwhile radicalism. And that's a sad thing to see.
I can understand how support for YeSNP has become a quasi-religious thing. We are all desperate to exit the rUK. But when a political party begins to resemble a cult then we should all be worried. That is not the purpose of political parties. And that is why more and more of us are beginning to speak out against what we see is happening.
It's not because we are yoons or Tories or quislings &c but because we believe deeply in the basic freedoms that we see disappearing around us. Some will read this and understand. Sadly others won't bother to read it but will use my reply as just another opportunity for name-calling and putting people down 

Friday, March 08, 2019

Yessers like to believe that they are the most politically educated people in the world. Apart from being wishful thinking anyone looking from the outside in would question that.
FB's Yes pages are mostly full of servility and self-congratulation with the leadership of the SNP elevated to the position of being demi-gods who are going to lead us all to freedom. And even while the demi-gods hand over all the responsibility to a suddenly beneficent WM Tory government the adulation at home remains unquelled.
They forget that it's perfectly possible to desire independence without either belonging to the SNP or having to support leaders who treat us all as if they ruled Animal Farm.
This isn't about the SNP or even its leaders. It's about the sheer stupidity of those who follow political parties unquestioningly without ever stopping to think for themselves. And worse than that, about the same idiots who don't understand the meaning of tolerance.
There is something deeply wrong in the Yes Movement but who has the courage to risk attracting hostility by speaking openly about it? How has it come to pass that collectively we have become like Pavlov's Dogs, salivating at the very mention of a second referendum which The Great Leader tells us we cannot have because some would-be fascists in London say No?
Independence was never going to be easy; the UK will not willingly sign its own death warrant. So how does our Great Leader propose to honour the mandate that we, the sovereign people, have given her?
It's no good asking the YeSNP Hallelujah Chorus because they can't tell you, apart from loosing off another stream of desperate invective. That's what they reduce it all into.
And if that's the best they can offer Scotland just what kind of society is it that they are creating? Beyond the invective, the tribalism and the bigotry they will have no answers.

Tuesday, March 05, 2019


No sooner had I published my previous post, The Politics of the Echo Chamber, someone reported it to Facebook who blocked it automatically.

This is the second blog of mine to have been blocked in the last week. To add insult to injury my posts had been made to my own FB Timeline and to two other pages that I administrate. At that moment my blog had not been posted to any other FB page. The censorship was effected in under five minutes!

Clearly someone is watching all my posts and whenever they see one from my blog concerning their intolerance they have it shut down. It's easy enough to do. You report a blog as, say, being abusive and FB shuts it down automatically. Trying to appeal to have it reinstated is hopeless. Once FB shuts something down, it remains shut down. So what these people are doing is to knowingly take advantage of the FB dictatorship.

Nothing gets done, there is no real outcry by others. One or two maybe but otherwise apathy rules and the SNP Stasi will know that too. So, in this way the Stasi succeed in controlling discussion on FB's indy pages and effectively making dissenters like me into non-persons.

Welcome to the New SNP, where debate is strictly controlled despite outward appearances. This censorship on social media is, I am convinced, being coordinated with a nod and a wink from Hope Street. And it gives a good pointer to the direction the technocrats wish us to take in a post-independent Scotland. A new Scotland which will play an active part in the US-led NATO and Atlantic Alliance, a land already becoming a playground for neoliberalism and the privatisation of public land and a laboratory for corporate lobbyist, Andrew Wilson's, lunatic 'Growth' Reported when adopted.

The sacrilege taking place at Culloden, the Flamingoland scandal at Loch Lomond, the despoliation given planning permission at Glen Etive. Neoliberalism already in action under the auspices of the Scottish Government and the New SNP.

Though this Report is only up for discussion at the SNP's April Conference I am not at all starry-eyed about their leadership's intentions which I firmly believe is to push it through to make it the modus operandi for the Scottish Government.

But leaving concerns about that aside for now, my focus remains on what the SNP Stasi are up to, turning the social media into nothing more than a platform for propaganda where all dissent is to be crushed at source. It's not just happening to a few of us. It happens every time someone speaks out of turn on the Yes pages. It mostly doesn't get reported because the victims usually just leave in disillusion and disgust.

The Stasi's attitude is vengeful and nasty, but who cares?, it works for them. The principle is the old Leninist one of political expediency where the means suit the ends and the 'greater good' is served by the stifling of free expression and dissent. Welcome to the New Scotland!

This concerns all of us, not just the victims. If they can do this and get away with it today you could be next. Unless, of course, you are happy to remain one of their sheeple and keep your opinions to yourself. In which case I have to ask you: is this the kind of New Scotland you wish to see and help create?

Is this what the struggle for our freedom is really all about? And if so, what kind of 'freedom' is that?


If the day ever dawns during my lifetime I will vote for Scotland's independence as I did in September 2014. 

There is no question of it, despite all the accusations, mud-slinging and constant demonization I receive from those on the social media who think that everyone in the Yes Movement should meekly obey-the-leader and keep eating their cereal without having the temerity (how dare they?) of questioning quite what those leaders are up to in their positions of untrammeled power.

They accuse me of being consistently anti-SNP, no matter how many times I point out to them that it's that party's leaders I throw eggs at and never the membership. Apparently they don't understand the difference! That worries me. And when I suggest they check my FB Timeline before slating me they just ignore my invitations and continue with the cheap jibes.

So let me put the record straight: anyone who goes back to 2014 will see three years of consistently pro-SNP articles which could be said to be bordering on adulation. In those days I admit to having been a pretty unquestioning fan of Nicola Sturgeon and part of the Yes Movement's SNP-Right-or-Wrong bandwagon politics of the echo chamber.

With the rest of us I voted for and watched the SNP sweep the board in the 2015 General Election and accepted Sturgeon's decision not to fight that election on a plebiscite for independence. Clearly this was all part of her 'cunning plan' to achieve independence.

It was only in June 2017 that my eyes were opened when I saw that Sturgeon was going to fight a general election with the slogan 'Stronger for Scotland'. Stronger, but not on independence! So I organized a petition which subsequently was signed by over 1000 people before it was presented to Sturgeon. Basically the petition asked that she and the SNP should actively fight the 2017 GE on the issue of independence so that, on achieving a majority of seats in Scotland, she could use that electoral victory as yet more proof that the majority of the electorate supported independence.

There was nothing controversial about such a suggestion as until about 2010 that position was clearly in every SNP election manifesto. And an electoral victory founded on such a manifesto is the most powerful mandate recognizable amongst international bodies such as the UN and the Council of Europe.

Of course, that petition was ignored by the party hierarchy. In 2017 the SNP leadership were running scared having fallen for Tory Ruth Davidson's Goebbelesque 'Do the Day Job' attacks which Scotland's unionist media were only too happy to parrot. Instead of taking the Tories head-on and justifying the case for independence they ran away from the playground bully. And lost heavily as a result.

Nearly two years on SNP leaders admit they made a mistake and should have addressed themselves 'to the 45%' who they had abandoned in their rush to the lifeboats. So it took nearly two years, for them to acknowledge this elementary tactic which others could see, for them to leave aside their hubris and eat humble pie. And these are the clever politicians leading us to the promised land?!

And for daring to make such suggestions I was banned from SNP-controlled FB pages and roundly abused by a lot of the party faithful, many of whose company I would not personally choose. For me the phrase 'mob rule' took on a new meaning. I had criticized their leaders and become fair game from that very moment.

Until then I had dismissed accusations made by the unionist media that the SNP's cybernats were hounding politicians and abusing them. I simply didn't believe a word of it, knowing all too well how the UK establishment use this scare-tactic as a weapon against a party or leader they wish to defeat.

So imagine my sense of shock when in June 2017 those very same guns were pointed and fired at me by certain cybernats. Until that June I had unquestioningly followed the line that the SNP would liberate us all and that it was a traitorous thing to hold them in a negative light. Although, to be honest, while all the time playing the part of being one of Nicola's adoring fans, deep down another voice was cautioning me not to get too overly idealistic about this or any other political party's promises. Bob Marley's words 'Never trust a Politician' kept ringing inside.

But leaving politicians well aside (a place which they should mostly be relegated to!) my concern was with certain Yessers and their fury and intolerance of a fellow Yesser. Was this the kind of reaction to be expected for questioning the leadership of a political party? Well, having been brought up to treat all politicians with scepticism (both my parents used to read and comment on the papers last thing every night) I was now having to deal with people who treated them like demi-gods among humanity.

Perhaps it's old age but I swear I can remember a time when folk in the British Isles mostly all held politicians in a sceptical light and treated them with a healthy disrespect. I can remember, as well the history of two countries, Germany and the Soviet Union, where the endless adulation afforded political leaders was the norm in totalitarian societies. Never for a moment did I expect that slavishness ever to find a home in dear, brave, individualist Scotland.

And yet the truth is that it has and I and several others have experienced its sharp end. And it's not coming from a person or two but in a flood of hate and vitriol. And that, taken with the banning for no reason (a reason is never given) makes me feel that someone is coordinating many of these attacks. I understand that the SNP has had several requests to rein-in its supporters but no such thing has happened.

I can see that such an attempt to control would not be very successful. I couldn't see how it could work. Such a diktat from on high would never be received too well! But as well as that others have asked if their involvement in the witch-hunts on the social media might go deeper still. It hasn't gone amiss that it's invariably the SNP-controlled FB pages with a large readership whose admins are the most intolerant and the first to ban people for no obvious reason.

No matter how much you explain your position when they attack you, they dismiss you, you become a non-person. Very rarely do they attempt reasoned arguments, mostly what you get are assumptions and when they pretend niceness they quickly follow pretence with a condescending lecture or two. And basically behind all that is Big Brother's veiled threat that we must all toe the line.

That's what I'm sensing and hearing in all this from the party faithful. And I ask myself what kind of a New Scotland will it be if we are prepared to accept such levels of bigotry and intolerance? Where even fellow Yessers can be disposed of and made into non-persons for speaking their truth? Other countries have descended into one or another form of totalitarianism: Germany, the Soviet Union, and now England. Like many I pray that a New Scotland might provide a beacon of light in the surrounding darkness. I still do, despite these ominous experiences. I still believe in this country's values of inclusivity and basic decency. 

And despite all I remain an optimist that goodness will prevail.

Thursday, February 28, 2019


'The party leadership plans to adopt vast majority of Growth Commissions.'

Do people realise what that will mean? It means that they will be adopting the plans for a neoliberal economy, no different to the neoliberal economies causing so much misery and strife the world-over. That and the SNP leadership's sworn allegiance to the Atlantic Alliance with a possible change of policy over nukes means that there will be little or no change after their post-independence plans.

I'm willing to bet serious money that one of the major concessions that will follow will be to allow the UK to keep its nuclear weapons indefinitely on Scottish soil. Similarly they will be forced to make concessions about the UK's continued access to North Sea oil.
The price Eire had to pay for her independence was to give away the six counties to the Brits. No doubt they will demand a similar sacrifice from Scotland over oil and nukes.


Sturgeon and the SNP have had almost five years to prepare for a second referendum

They've done sweet FA in all that time. Now they're calling for citizen's assemblies! What are they playing at? What are they afraid of? When support for indy is at least 50% of the population why do they continue to behave in this feart fashion?
Are they feart of the public or of WM, or both?? How far do the polls have to move before she'll do anything? And why, unlike Alex Salmond, is she not out in the streets drumming up support? Is she serious about indy or is it all just another carrot-dangling exercise?

Wednesday, February 27, 2019


I'm told that Mark Zuckerberg's great grandfather is Lord Rothschild. Whether true or not this man's greed and venal nature has no limits.

Not satisfied with banning a perfectly democratic blog for supposedly being abusive (!) I have now received this from their administration. Meanwhile all my appeals to FB to review their ludicrous ban remain ignored.

For the Yes Family to continue with this FB dictatorship is like turkeys voting for Christmas. We really must find an alternative platform and soon.

Tuesday, February 26, 2019


Oh the irony!

The very same people in the Yes Movement who quite rightly rail 24/7 against the tyranny of  British unionism are now turning on any individual on Facebook's Yes pages. We are being banned from Yes pages and now even our private blogs are being blocked from being posted.

Since the summer of 2017 I have become increasingly outspoken about the manner in which the SNP's leadership have mismanaged the movement for Scotland's independence. It was that summer that my eyes were opened to their defeatism and consistent refusal to fight a general election on the indy ticket. Well, once one's eyes have been opened it's very difficult to close them again and the revelation was accompanied by a constant stream of abuse that it was my pleasure to receive on Facebook pages.

That's when I was shocked into asking myself the question, what is wrong with these people that they cannot stand the slightest bit of criticism or dissent? Why are they so intolerant of others who do not share the exact same views as they do? And just who are they 
who enjoy spending their time screaming at each other?

I believe there are at least two groups: firstly those who really are no different to sectarian football fans who treat independence and the SNP as a football club where everyone else is there to be abused and shat upon; and secondly a silent group of privileged, well-educated people with some degree of vested interest in promoting the SNP and keeping it in permanent power.

It is that second group which concerns me because I believe that they do not work alone and that they coordinate campaigns to isolate, marginalize and eliminate anyone who dares to criticize the party on the social media. It is this second group which I believe is responsible for the treatment that is being meted out to those who dissent.

The latest episode started with my being banned from a Yes group called Uncensored for Scotland. No reason or notification was given for the ban but as this was the second time it had happened on this page it was pretty clear that the reason for their ban was that, in their eyes, my posts were having a 'divisive' effect on other members! Quite how I was causing division was, of course, never divulged!

Following that I decided to revive my old blog, Chimes of Freedom, which had been lying dormant for several years. Yet, no sooner had I done that and posted blog articles to FB, I was again banned, this time not for my FB posts but for those from my own private blog! The reason given by FB was that I was 'spamming'!

That's when the penny dropped. Someone was reporting my posts as spam and FB was acting on their complaints. Every ban has been challenged and I await FB's decision. You will understand why I'm not holding my breath!

Now, while all this might strike you to be a rather childish game I believe it is rather more serious than that. Are this second group, the more well-heeled ones, acting alone? Or are they part of a coordinated informal campaign which can be traced back to the New SNP's headquarters? My intuition tells me that's more than likely and that this is the way the New SNP apparat seeks to control opinion on the social media.

That apparat knows only too well how to turn to their advantage the algorithms of the FB polis by firing off a volley of spam reports against anyone whose posts they don't like and who they wish to silence. That is exactly what happened to me.

Now I am all too aware that this claim will be immediately denounced by their vigilantes to be nothing more than a crazy conspiracy theory. But I've heard that accusation made only too often by people with something to hide. So all I request from those who read this is simply to keep in mind what I say, even if you don't buy the whole story.

I am just as keen as these zealots to see the day dawn when Scotland will be free again. But where they and I part company is that I would like our freedom to be real, to mean something in our everyday lives and not just to become another means to keep a political party packed with privileged technocrats in charge of the Animal Farm.

Sunday, February 24, 2019


I have decided to revive my old blog which, as you might see, has been lying dormant for the last six years.

Since September 2014 I have been focusing all my energy on promoting Scotland's independence through Facebook and more recently MeWe. I did this in the belief that using the social media provided us in the Yes Movement with a powerful new tool for change. A tool that has been used successfully by movements all over the Planet.

As well as that an awareness of modern history pointed to something very powerful unfolding in the events taking place in this country which took me back to my earlier days as an organizer and campaigner in England during the Peace Movement of the 1980's.

The peace movement we created in those days was extraordinary. Growing spontaneously it not only covered the entire UK but continental Europe as well as the rest of the world. Women played a major role and my former Russian-speaking wife played a significant part when she and others travelled to St Petersburg (still Leningrad in those days) to build bridges of friendship with the local Peace Committee. We did all that without the help of the Internet.

During those days I well remember the radical historian, E.P. Thompson, who spoke about European disarmament and the Cold War being propagated by US President Ronald Reagan and Britain's Margaret Thatcher as the very mirror image of what President Brezhnev of the USSR was projecting on his side of the iron curtain. It was only much after the fall and dissolution of the Soviet Union that we were to discover that a major reason for its collapse was that the Soviet Union was no longer able to keep up with the level of arms production and deployment at the frightening pace being set by the US Military-Industrial-Complex.

Moreover US intelligence knew this and was upping the arms race with the deliberate intention of breaking the USSR in this manner. And of course they succeeded in doing just that. In that game of brinkmanship the USA played an aggressive proactive role whilst the USSR was reduced to playing an unsuccessful reactive one.

Talking as he did about how both sides of the Cold War were throwing-up and reacting to a mirror-image of themselves he went further. He pointed to the growth of a liberation movement within the Soviet Bloc and Solidarnosc in Poland. He predicted that this movement which, at the time, was active within the eastern bloc would inevitably spill over into western Europe and mirror itself west of the Berlin Wall.

Well, it didn't happen as neatly as that but the Scottish Referendum in 2014 brought back his prediction to mind. Just as movements like the Polish Solidarnosc were in a struggle to overturn Soviet imperialism here it was now happening in western Europe where a people were going about something not unsimilar in their attempt to rid themselves of the vestiges of another old empire, the British one.

At last the revolutionary times that Thompson predicted had come. In its own way what Scotland faced in September 2014 was the prospect of a peaceful revolution and the end of a 307-year era of occupation by a foreign power. And though we were denied that chance at the ballot-box that first campaign sparked a flame in the heart of Scots which has burned and grown ever since. The inevitability of big changes was something too great to be extinguished.

That's what took me to Facebook and the social media. Just as had happened in other countries, I saw the social media as the tool for organising and mobilising our own movement for liberation. Perhaps I was being far too idealistic about what I thought we could achieve through the Net. While I am sure that it has helped to attract support to the rallies and marches it has done little else.

Instead of growing and maturing into a vehicle with a life of its own the Yes Movement on the internet remains nothing more than a disparate bunch of individuals who, collectively, remain beholden to the whims and fancies of a small clique of leaders in a political party which keeps us at arm's length while preoccupying itself with the reading of opinion polls and the production of revisionist economic reports that pander to no one but the obscenely-rich 1% and their neoliberal servants.

Anyone who dares to question this status quo is screamed at and called a plant, a yoon or similar. They are rubbished, marginalized and treated like lepers. That's the price you have to pay for speaking out of turn about the SNP or its government.

Up until now I have consistently made it clear that I do not and will not comment about the rank-and-file membership of the SNP but that I reserved the right to criticize its leadership. All that fell on deaf ears with too many cybernats appearing to be unable to distinguish between the two. To these people the SNP and its leaders have taken an almost god-like role. 'Trust in Nicola, she knows best!' has become a rallying-call to the foot soldiers and anyone who won't do as they're told is dismissed willy nilly as some kind of low life that has no place in the Yes Movement. Instead of the politicians serving the people it is we who are being expected to kowtow to the politicians.

Well, so much for Scotland's revolution! The more hysterical cybernats doing this remind me of a story that the Russian dissident, Alexander Solzhenitsyn, once told of a meeting when Stalin made a speech and the Soviet deputies kept applauding him endlessly, each of them afraid of being the first one to stop clapping. Until they were falling down in sheer exhaustion! Too afraid to think for themselves or to admit that they might be mistaken, the zealots in our Yes Movement would like us all to toe the same Stalinist line or else.

This was not quite the mirror-image that Thompson foresaw. Nor the one that I had hoped would start to grow in Scotland on that fateful day in September 2014. 'Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose' seems a far more appropriate pointer to the future if the chorus-group of name-callers are to have their way. I really have to struggle these days to be an optimist about where we're being led. The Promised Land that beckons may well turn out to be nothing more than a mirage with the name callers finding yet more scape-goats to blame for their own failures.

Saturday, February 23, 2019

I understand that collectively we suffer from disempowerment. Our system disempowers us and then enslaves us.
In Scotland we have the compounding of disempowerment due to centuries of annexation by an occupying power. But now all that is rapidly changing so this is OUR moment in what is really a global revolution of which we see only bits and pieces when the MSM allows us to.

Brexit has provided us with a critical watershed moment in what is really a peaceful revolution. And we know all too well the meaning of the phrase The Revolution will not be Televised!


Friday, February 22, 2019

I want to see Scotland free of this nasty imperialist anachronism called the union. Brexit has exposed the UK before the whole world to be a sick, inward-looking parasite that feeds off corruption, lies and xenophobia. No one in their sane mind would wish to live in that kind of society.
I feel sorry for the sane ones in England; they have no alternative to the current political mess they are in. But we in Scotland do have an alternative and we have a party, the SNP, which is poised on achieving the greatest political victory of its existence.

Given that moment of history-in-the-making it would seem churlish and ungrateful for anyone to criticise the SNP or its leadership. And we all know that the unionist trolls are everywhere on these pages, determined to conduct a last battle of words as they are pushed inexorably into history. And so long as their battle is simply one of words, usually invective, let them do their worst. Who's listening?!
They don't worry me too much; they are part of the bad old ways, even if they don't know it, governed by emotions and a fantasy they call the past. It's the future that concerns me. Like many others I have a dream of a New Scotland, a new renaissance, where our little country will help lead the Planet into the 21st Century.
So if I become exercised about the freedom of speech, please see it in the context of our collective responsibility in our doing what we can to help create that New Scotland. To free Scotland of the imperialist millstone around its neck remains our first objective; to create a free society full of new ideas and solutions to the challenges we face from the Earth Changes must surely be the next one.

Yesterday I posted this article from Bellacaledonia, The SNP's Great Moving Right Show,
Expecting the usual chorus of abuse and yoon-calling I decided to post it to just a few pages. No sooner had I done that I was told by one self-righteous cybernat, “if that’s the way you feel Rory, away to England and help JC. Your attitudes and posts are not helping the independence movement you claim to support.”
The BC article, if you read it, is about the right-moving tendencies of certain senior SNP figures such as Andrew Wilson and Angus Robertson and how this is reflecting on the conduct of the Party. My purpose, as always, was to inform others and to let them decide. But apparently this is no longer allowed. And as a 'New Scot' of 33 years' standing I am told to 'away to England'!
That did it. I can sympathize with feelings of resentment against migrants from the south coming to live in Scotland and treating it like a colony of Little Britain. But I have never been one of those and anyone who checks out my track record in local government politics will know my commitment to the Highlands as a former regional councillor and my preparedness to risk arrest and losing that post in order to put my body in front of the British state as I once did together with a small group of protesters at the Kessock Bridge in 1991,
That protest was entirely spontaneous; no one planned it, it just happened. Afterwards the Scottish media was full of it and I believe that it helped the cause of Independence greatly. From being treated like a fool or a 'token coloured' by many Highland councillors I suddenly gained their respect. I also received racist abuse, including a vile note left in my councillor's pigeon hole. My reaction to that was to report it to the Highland Constabulary who sent several polis into the Council, effectively putting the fear of god into the guilty parties!
So when people make puerile comments on FB such as the one quoted above, forgive me if sometimes I reply in anger. With them the slightest criticism of the SNP's leadership and it's all-out nuclear war. For having the effrontery to do so I get called a Yoon, a Tory, a snake in the grass and a whole lot else. Such is party politics in 2019AD: everyone is expected to toe the line and remain very PC. The message is quite clear: If you say anything awkward about the SNP you can get the fuck out of 'our' country.
Our country? Since when did any political party confiscate the keys to our nation? When did we become a fledgeling one-party state? Just who are these people making these threats and what kind of a political agenda are they working for? I dread to think.
Nationalism is something that, for many years, I wouldn't go anywhere near. I was born in a country that tore itself apart in a 50-year civil war caused by ethno-religious nationalism. But after living in Scotland and serving her in public office my eyes were opened to the true extent of imperialist occupation in this country. And worse than that the ABUSE that came with that occupation. So when I heard Scottish nationalism described as 'civic' I was only too happy to join up to it.
But what's so civic about the name-calling and 'away to England' taunts? What have I done to earn such abuse other than to call out some right-wing opportunists who would like to inflict their own neoliberal dystopia on us all post independence? Sorry, but I've seen it all before in another time and another place and I ain't ready to be suckered into it this time. Politicians are there to serve us and not the other way round. If certain cybernats can't see that then they do no one any favours. If they remain naïve about how politicians operate that's one thing; but when they start being abusive and telling people to get back to their own country then the alarm bells start to go off. If these people are allowed to prevail then god help us all.
Politics appear to be moving evermore to the Right. And the SNP is not immune from this unpleasant phenomenon. If we are to be constantly silenced today pre-independence than what are we to expect once it has arrived? I no longer feel comfortable in the presence of this kind of intolerance which effectively says either believe unquestioningly what you are told or get the fuck out of our country.
During my 33 years in Scotland I have always voted SNP and in 2014 I was proud to be able to vote for Independence. When Alex Salmond was my MP and after the SNP victory in 2010 I wrote to him saying that I looked forward to the day when he was our first President.
Now I feel hurt and disillusioned by the thoughtless comments being made by certain cybernats on these pages. But being no spring chicken and having developed a tough skin in earlier political days I'm happy to give back as good as I get from these idiots.
But god help the New Scotland if their kind ever have anything to do with our collective futures