Tuesday, October 27, 2009

A name can tell a thousand lies

Interesting (not to mention dismaying) that Jeff has anecdotal evidence that the recent surge of publicity for the BNP could lead recent arrivals to these shores to wrongly conclude that the politics of the similarly-named SNP are similar. I used to know a Chilean man who had been frightened by a documentary on the BNP, and was completely convinced that not only was the SNP a similar sort of party, but was in actual fact the Scottish branch of the BNP! I was particularly surprised by this given that he had lived in Scotland ever since fleeing from the Pincohet regime in the mid-1970s, and therefore must have been here during at least part of the SNP's 70s heyday. But perhaps the language barrier had at that stage prevented him from following local political developments.

Unfortunately it's difficult to see in practical terms what the SNP can do about such confusion, although it does give all of us sympathetic to the party another reason (not that we need one) to hope that the BNP publicity circus dies away very soon. I do seem to recall a few years ago that Alex Salmond remarked in an interview that if he'd been starting from scratch, he'd have preferred to christen his party the 'Scottish Independence Party'. However, it is of course a complete non-starter for a large, mainstream party that's been around for seventy-five years to consider changing its name just because the Brit Fascists in the latest of their many guises have decided to part-copy it.

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