Monday, June 25, 2012

The No campaign set the ethnic purity bar high

This is from the Record. Can we chalk it down as further confirmation that the most parochial Scots are often the most fervent Brit Nats, or is it merely a rather distasteful affectation?

"Alistair Darling says Better Together campaign will be led by real Scots...Darling said: “I don’t think people are impressed when you line up actors, no matter how good they may be, who have flown in from the other side of the Atlantic to tell us what to do.""

"Real Scots" only need apply : so presumably the hundreds of thousands of Scottish residents who came here from England and other countries can forget any presumptuous notions they may have entertained about having their voices heard and valued during the referendum campaign. And it appears you also cease to be a 'real Scot' the moment you stray further than Gretna Green. As Alan Cumming himself pointed out, it's one thing to say that non-residents shouldn't have a vote in the referendum (and indeed they shouldn't), but if they're not even allowed to express an opinion then clearly we can look forward to hearing a good deal less on the subject from the likes of Cameron, Osborne, Clegg, Miliband and Balls.

I'm also rather puzzled as to why the No campaign are lending such helpful support to the Yes side's USP, namely that we don't like being told what to do by people outside Scotland. Or is it OK to be told what to do just so long as the culprits don't actually "fly in", ie. if they do it all by remote control from Downing Street, just as Mr Darling himself did as Chancellor?

* * *

The first thing that strikes me about the name 'Better Together' is that it's a brave decision not to use the word 'Scotland' at all. OK, 'No Scotland' probably wouldn't have been a winner, and nor would 'Keep Scotland British', but even so. An even braver call has been made in respect of the campaign's official Twitter account, which has 'UK' in its username, but not 'Scotland'. In case you're wondering why they couldn't simply use 'Better_Together', it's because that name has already been snapped up by Zach and Holly, a "couple in love sharing their lives together". Just like Scotland's relationship with David Cameron, really - why are we even having this referendum?

Enigmatic PB Nat-bashing troll "Devo Max" (who a leading Cornish sex memoirist insists is not Tom Harris, but I still have my doubts) stunned the nation last night by revealing that he has signed the No declaration, and said that he had done so to "keep Scotland strong". Which at least makes marginally more logical sense than the official strapline of the campaign - "Ensure a Stronger Scotland, a United Kingdom". How precisely do you make something "stronger" by keeping it exactly as it is?

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