Thursday, 21 November 2019

More like fudge than iron

One of the PM’s attack lines on Labour is based around the idea that Labour and the SNP have stitched up a deal to allow a second independence referendum next year in exchange for the SNP supporting a minority Labour government.  It’s an outright lie, of course, but that’s only to be expected of Johnson.  There is no agreement, and Corbyn has been saying clearly and repeatedly that he will not allow such a referendum for at least a few years.  Johnson has gone so far as to give a “cast iron pledge” that he will never permit a second referendum, which sounds impressive until one tries to ascertain whether cast-iron is stronger or weaker than “do or die”, and “dying in a ditch”.  Most people would probably consider a cast-iron pledge to be a weaker promise than “do or die”, so I guess that means that we can safely assume that there will indeed be a second independence if the Tories win the election.  Assuming that he means the opposite of everything he says is always safer than taking it at face value, and only causes a problem on those frequent occasions where he manages to contradict himself.
Whilst both Johnson and Corbyn are legally correct in assuming that they can simply deny the Scottish government a second referendum (it merely underlines the old truth that power devolved is power retained), it seems a curious approach to be telling the Scots in advance that it doesn’t matter how many times or in how many ways they elect a clear majority of representatives on a pro-independence platform, their votes can and will be simply ignored.  It’s almost as though they are trying to strengthen the perception that the Scots don’t count in the ‘precious union’ of nations and encourage Scots to give their support to the SNP.  Telling people that they can’t have what they vote for may give them a way of avoiding debate about alternative futures for Scotland, but it simply means that that debate is likely to happen without them.
I assume that it’s an argument tailored to English voters rather than the Scots, but all the polling evidence suggests that English voters, by and large, aren’t particularly exercised about whether Scotland stays or goes anyway.  In Johnson’s case, it’s presumably an attempt to appeal to English nationalists who feel that Scotland should not be able to influence politics in England, but that is hardly an argument which strengthens the union.  Indeed, the best way of implementing that view is to get rid of Scottish MPs completely – another reason for believing that his pledge is probably made of soft fudge rather than cast-iron; if it is in his personal interest to get rid of Scotland, he is unlikely to hesitate for long in doing so.
It is Corbyn’s position which is the more curious, however.  This is a man who has supported national liberation movements across the globe, including the reunification of Ireland.  Why does he have such a blind spot when it comes to Scotland and Wales?

1 comment:

Spirit of BME said...

The answer to your question is, Brother Corbyn isa Red Tory and like Blue,Orange,Yellow (an appropriate colour for Plaid Cymru- The Party of parts of Wales) and Green Tories, they are the enemy of our country.