Sunday, February 15, 2009

Variety is the spice of life

James at the Two Doctors blog is unhappy with Nationalist complaints about the "conniving English" preventing Scotland from enjoying the benefits of North Sea oil in the 1970s. The grounds for his annoyance is that oil production has peaked, ie. it's the past, and we should instead be talking about renewables, which are the future.

Of course, James is spectacularly (and probably willfully) missing the point on a number of levels. The SNP - it should go without saying - have said absolutely nothing about "the English" (conniving or otherwise). But they are rightly infuriated by the mindset and actions of so many members of the United Kingdom civil service - who by definition are supposed to act in the best interests of the whole UK, Scotland included. It was they who adopted the them and us colonial attitude - we must prevent 'them' from gaining political autonomy so that 'we' (southern England?) don't lose access to the oil funds. And it was they who consciously embarked on a shameless campaign of deception to achieve this goal.

It may seem an odd thing to say, James, but this actually isn't about the future - it's about the past. You need to understand the past in order to understand how you ended up in your current position, and to learn from that. And I'm seriously confused as to why he thinks it's not possible to take at least take a passing interest in history while still moving forward with a renewable energy programme at the same time. Humans are designed to multi-task - or is James' entire life composed of "wind farms, wind farms, wind farms. No thankyou, mother, I don't want dinner, I must maintain my concentration on wind farms".


  1. If you conduct your life without the full knowledge of what shaped your society, then you have neither the ability nor curiosity to change it.

  2. Hi Scot,

    I was surprised at James's take too. For a party that is supposedly committed to Independence they are beginning to show as much antipathy towards the SNP as Labour. I think the Greens are beginning to project all that is wrong with the environment onto the SNP. The building of the M74 Link in particular seems to have drawn their ire and yet I am convinced this link will reduce congestion and allow traffic currently stuck in jams to move, reducing pollution.

    The Greens, in their blind hatred of road transport, do not seem to see the need to explain to the electorate how an economy that currently relies on that transport can function without it. This failure will not advance their cause and I could not now vote Green, for it patently would mean the destruction of the Scottish economy, no matter what other desirable economic and environmental benefits might accrue from their other policies.

    Currently the overwhelming effect of Green policies in Scotland would not be Independence but poverty.