Sunday, October 17, 2021

Some concrete suggestions of how to achieve Yes unity

I gather that Ruth Wishart has issued a call for an end to "internecine warfare" in the Yes movement, although ironically I can't see what she said because she blocked me in the summer after I sent her a couple of polite replies.  Nevertheless, unity is obviously a desirable objective, and here are my own concrete suggestions about how it can be achieved.

1) Set a date for a referendum, and immediately start the process of a) requesting a Section 30 order and b) legislating for the referendum after the Section 30 order is refused.  This would end the deep suspicions on the leadership-sceptic side of the movement that the SNP are stringing us along, and are more interested in reaping the career benefits of what Wings called "the independence industry" than they are in delivering independence itself.  The stock objection of "but we're still in a pandemic" is bogus, because it would be perfectly possible to choose a date some time in 2023, by which time the pandemic will either be over or there'll be sufficient normality to hold a referendum.  As soon as we have a fixed date to build towards, we'll all start moving forward together with a common purpose.

2) Find a genuine compromise on GRA reform.  In saying this, I'll infuriate some of my fellow Alba members just as much as SNP leadership loyalists, because both sides of the debate believe there is no room for compromise due to the fundamental principles at stake.  Nevertheless, the only apparent alternative to compromise at the moment is an imminent total victory for the trans rights lobby, which will poison relationships in the independence movement for years to come.  The likes of John Nicolson and Mhairi Black may not want to hear or admit this, but a very substantial proportion of the movement is made up of what they describe as "transphobes", without whom there's unlikely to be any victory for Yes in a referendum.  The two sides will somehow have to learn to co-exist under the same umbrella.

3) Establish normalised relations with Alba.  Parties in electoral competition with each other don't have to be in a state of all-out war, especially if they agree on the same flagship policy.  The SNP regard the Greens as friendly rivals, not enemies, and there's no reason why the SNP and Alba can't develop a similar relationship.  At the very least, stop treating Alba like a terrorist organisation.

4) And Alba should do its bit in return.  As I've said before, it's important that Alba's electoral strategy is soberly calculated to maximise the chances of independence, rather than to maximise the chances of revenge against the Sturgeon leadership of the SNP.  We must be incredibly cautious about the risk of splitting the pro-indy vote by putting up candidates in first-past-the-post elections, and we should show generosity of spirit in the local elections next year by urging Alba voters to give their lower preferences to the SNP, the Greens, and any other pro-indy parties or candidates.

32 comments:

  1. Pretty sure Ruth Wishart was another BOTH VOTES SNP NUMPTY. What was the problem in working together earlier in the year in the Holyrood election. Why not then why now?People like me held up my side and voted SNP in May in the constituency even though I felt sick doing it. But Sturgeon and Wishart preferred loads of Britnat MSPs in Holyrood so they could moan about them. A party (the SNP) that is SUPPOSED to be about independence preferring Britnat MSPs to Alba MSPs is a Britnat party.

    Just like you cannot trust Westminster you cannot trust Sturgeons gang - Sturgeon and her gang lied repeatedly throughout the Parliamentary inquiry. Oh and there is the small matter of lying in a criminal court as well. Oh and the hijacking of Rape Crisis Scotland to pursue their own own disgraceful agenda. Oh and working with the Britnat media to try and send Salmond to jail.

    These people do not want independence. At least with the Tories you know where they stand these people are snakes in the grass. Sturgeon spent 4 years persecuting Salmond whilst doing NOTHING to promote or prepare for independence. She failed in fitting up Salmond and is a failure in leading the independence movement.

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    1. Oh and I could have mentioned sending Murray to jail (it's his birthday today) and trying to send Hirst to jail as well.

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    2. Pity I can’t ‘Like’ your post as I like it.

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  2. Nice to hear some practical suggestions for the future, rather than certain people moaning about the same old things over and over again.

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  3. And parties need to respect that many voters supported for both SNP and Alba. So "SNP voters" and "Alba voters" are not mutually exclusive sects, so the parties need to respect the voters' pluralistic tendencies.

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  4. WGD NUMPTY QUOTE OF THE WEEK

    It's just as well it is the WGD numpty quote of the week or I would have been tempted to quote Ruth Wishart.

    This weeks quote comes from an ex poster on SGP Grizebard who says:

    " acutely aware - as we all should be - that we need to avoid any and every divisive issue that could lose votes when the crunch comes." You mean like Sturgeons GRA/Hate Crime and trying/sending independence supporters to jail. Is that the sort of thing you mean Grizebard. Away and tell your messiah Sturgeon to stop being divisive and see how you get on with that. Sturgeon would set her dogs on you . YA NUMPTY

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  5. As far as Alba's council election prospects go, I hope the likes of Chris McEleny are already workings hard to remind people about who they are as individuals, not just SNP drones. Alba can't win an air war, but they can win small, tactical victories by focusing on the advantages they have. Kenny McAskill should be stumping like crazy for Alba candidates in East Lothian. Salmond should be working his networks in Aberdeenshire to win some things there. Maybe he could even stand, which would force a lot more attention on to the party in an election cycle where they'd likely be ignored otherwise.

    They should also emphasise that with STV, a vote for Alba is almost without risk. If they don't have enough votes to elect anyone, those votes can still go to other pro-indy candidates. It's not like the kind of calculus people had to do for Holyrood, much less like the problem of FPTP for Westminster.

    What odds would you put on the SNP giving even a tacit endorsement of Alba as a lower ranked option?

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  6. Suggestion one would be sufficient

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    1. I'm not sure about that. Number 2 is incredibly important imo, but also very hard to achieve at this point.
      The whole GRA situation is a gift from the gods to the Unionist cause. So much so that you'd almost start to wonder if it was orchestrated by some evil Unionist genious saboteur extraoridinaire.
      3 and 4 might follow as a direct consequence of 2.

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    2. Except for the fact that Labour and the Lib Dems support it.

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    3. They have also been infiltrated by man hating covens and beta cuck males.

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  7. James - if you haven't already done so can I suggest you (and everyone else) listens to the 11-part podcast 'Stonewall' ?
    A few of us spent the weekend listening, and although were were aware that Stonewall controlled much of the GRA and related policy development in Scotland (the Scottish Trans Alliance dictates/develops/controls the rest), we had no idea just how bad the situation is across the UK establishment.

    The podcast is the work of Stephen Nolan and his team (BBC NI), and much of their criticism is directed at the BBC itself.

    It's a 'no holds barred' 8 hour (approx) example of what the BBC used to be famous for - serious and factual investigative journalism. The Nolan team prove that Stonewall has 'captured' the Scottish, Welsh, and (until recently) UK governments, along with a huge chunk of 'the establishment', private corporations, charities, the police, education, and other bodies (including OFCOM !).

    For example, we didn't know that any entity signing up to Stonewall's '' Workplace Equality Index'' also sign a legally-binding gagging order.
    That's just one of many shocks uncovered by Nolan's team.

    If anything, it's even worse in Scotland as we not only have Stonewall dictating and creating policy, we have the STA (Scottish Trans Alliance) doing the same thing.
    Both lobby groups receive huge amounts of government (taxpayer) cash, meaning that the Scottish government is paying to be lobbied.

    Then it gets worse.

    Link to Episode 1 (of 11) : https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/p09yk1fy

    What's also very significant is that after repeatedly refusing to respond to Nolan's FOIs (blaming that Stonewall gagging order), the BBC suddenly cut all ties with Stonewall just a week or two ago - just before the 'Stonewall' podcasts went live.

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  8. Is this list intended to be in chronological order? I hope so, because without the SNP moving on (1) we do not get to (4). If the SNP do not pursue independence, it is our duty to seek to remove them as the party of independence, for they will have surrendered that title.

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    1. No, 4 is something we should be doing anyway. You don't replace the SNP as the party of independence by helping unionists get elected.

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    2. If the SNP doesn't do No 1 in fairly short order (or start the process, at least) they are obviously a devolutionist party which means they are basically unionist. So standing against them in FPTP is fair game. That is a big decision, obviously, because it means that independence will take decades. But if the SNP will not move on this, what choice do we have?

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    3. The choice we have is not to sabotage ourselves by needlessly succumbing to catastrophism. The SNP will never be beyond redemption for as long as there are people in it who genuinely believe in independence. A particular leadership might eventually prove to be beyond redemption (I don't think we're at that stage yet), but no leadership lasts forever.

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  9. James, my specific thoughts on your article.

    "Unity is obviously a desirable objective." - it sure is and should be a top priority for a leader of an independence movement. So why is Sturgeon causing disunity? My answer - she doesn't want independence. She wants top marks from Stonewall.

    1) "This would end the deep suspicions on the leadership -sceptic side of the movement......". It wouldn't end mine that's for sure.

    2) The GRA zealots will never compromise. They care a lot more about this stuff than Scottish independence. So losing a referendum will not matter to them. They are not even "soft" yes. They value a gold star from Stonewall more than independence. They are fraudsters. They never put this stuff in front of the people of Scotland at Mays election.

    3) " and there's no reason why the SNP and Alba can't develop a similar relationship."
    Four reasons I can think of James. Sturgeon hates Salmond. Sturgeon doesn't want independence. Sturgeon is a control freak who sees Salmond as a threat to her position of power. Too many Alba members will not accept the Stonewall nonsense.

    The numpties are not a problem. If Sturgeon told them they must now express their absolute love for Salmond and the Alba party even nutters like Dr Jim and Malkie would do it. That is the measure of how controlled these numpties are.

    4) Personally, I am not interested in revenge but it would be nice to see some people on the same path they forced Craig Murray to take. I am for independence and I no longer see voting for the SNP/Greens as a vote that will make any progress towards independence. Quite the reverse in fact.

    In summary, I commend your desire for unity but I don't see it anytime soon with Sturgeon/Harvie/Slater in positions of power. If there ever was Indyref2 with that lot in charge it would be a disaster and the numpties would be told to blame Alba.

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    1. Indy for Scotland. Pretty much agree with all your points.
      Your comments regarding item 2, in particular are deadly accurate. Trans Rights Activists never debate and never compromise. Any questioning of the Ideology is dismissed as Transphobic. Stonewall = No Debate.
      A recent instance. Baroness Kennedy is currently heading the working group looking into adding an aggrevator of Misogyny to sit alongside the other protected groups in the HCB.
      Any reasonable person might suggest simply adding the protected characteristic of 'Sex' (as listed in the Equalities Act) to the existing Bill, this insertion has been 'allowed for' in the original draft.
      However she reported very recently that was unlikely, as the TRA's don't like the word 'sex'. In the first place Trans Identity is already a protected characteristic listed in the HCB but that is not enough. What we have is one tiny minority vetoing the language and shape of any potential legislation protecting half the population of Scotland.
      Everything, just everything is about the 'T' and it won't stop.
      Like Elrick, I suggest the Nolan Investigation podcast from BBC Ulster is an absolute must.
      You will hear how the SG have erased 'Mother' from official government language at Stonewall's behest (extra points in their 'Ponzi Scheme') or in ep.8 Debate, where transwoman Dr. Debbie Hayton freely admits she has the exact same rights as everyone else and 'possibly more.
      James can I suggest you have a word with Alba Women's Convenor and ask what rights she is prepared to surrender or compromise? All we want is the retention of legal single 'sex' spaces such as refuges, changing facilities or rape crisis centres. Then ask yourself what rights you would be prepared to surrender? Free speech or the right to a jury trial?
      Genuine Transwomen are not the problem but there is no doubt that Self ID will be exploited by abusive men.
      Only a fool would compromise on basic safeguarding.

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    2. There can be no "compromise" as none is needed - the GRA exists for people with dysphoria not men with paraphiliac and does what it is supposed to do.

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    3. All I have to do at this point is repeat what I said in the blogpost: "In saying this, I'll infuriate some of my fellow Alba members just as much as SNP leadership loyalists, because both sides of the debate believe there is no room for compromise due to the fundamental principles at stake. Nevertheless, the only apparent alternative to compromise at the moment is an imminent total victory for the trans rights lobby..."

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    4. A simple compromise would be to include a vote on GRA/Hate Crime alongside a referendum on Scottish independence. If that was to be the case I bet there would be a greater chance of an independence referendum taking place. Perhaps the GRA zealots would like to try a bit of democracy for a change. I won't hold my breath though.

      The GRA "no compromise" people are starting to come across like the other "we are the people" lot with their cries of "no surrender."

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  10. Now if I remember correctly the 2011 Scottish census includes questions that will identify the number of trans people. I would have thought the GRA zealots would be pushing for it to have taken place in 2011 rather than have it postponed. A bit of a mystery this postponement - or is it? Covid is just an excuse.

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  11. As far as GRA is concerned all we need to do is stop talking about it. I believe the vast majority of people in Scotland couldn't care less about it and are only mildly aware of it.

    No.1 suggestion is obviously the most important one and I agree with your conclusions.

    Vote Alba in next year's council elections [I presume Alba will be well represented in candidature]. Hopefully a good showing by Alba will shake Sturgeon's complacency.

    On an individual level we should all behave as if indyref2 was already in motion: get out the Saltires, put up the posters on windows, put on the pro-indy car stickers, wear the badges etc. We need to stimulate conversation; we need to provoke; we need to shove the politics of it all in everyone's faces, especially the SNP's face, especially because we know Sturgeon will hate it.

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  12. Once the GRA zealots obtain their total trans rights victory where next for them? How many years will it be before they start wanting books using the "wrong" words burned. No compromise for them - not even renaming books from Women in Love ( DHLawrence) to CISWomen in Love will satisfy them. However, historically people who burn books often do not enjoy a good outcome.

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  13. Lordy Lordy Halleluja!!!

    Can somebody please email this blog post to every SNP/Alba/Green politician in Scotland, and whilst they are at it, print it off and send a paper copy too. It's the most logical, sensible and concise summary of the situation I've seen.

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    1. After a highly successful book sponsorship campaign, every single MSP has or will very shortly have a copy of Helen Joyce's book 'Trans - When Ideology meets Reality'.
      The book covers all the issues in a very respectful manner and is immaculately researched.
      The truth is every single MSP has the information to hand if they choose to engage, however at the very least they can no longer claim to be ignorant of women's concerns.
      Highly recommend the book to everyone interested in the subject.

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  14. There's sufficient normality now to name a date for mid-2022, in my view, if the SNP were really serious about it. I'm not sure what waiting for 2023 would achieve, particularly, but at least if they did name a date in 2023 that would be some actual progress. But I'm not holding my breath.

    If the SNP did "normalise" relations with Alba, then there would be a reasonable justification for (4). But I'm betting they won't. Why would they, having seen Alba's performance at Holyrood, being frank?

    At present it is like expecting a bulldog to normalise relations with a flea, for all I voted Alba on the list myself. Probably all they will do is essentially dial down the massive attack and largely ignore them, thinking they have essentially seen off any possible danger now the Scottish Parliament election is done with, and not bother to give them the lifeblood of oxygen.

    But to me, the principle stands. If we get to a Westminster GE and the SNP haven't made any progress towards a second indyref by then, then frankly they will need the threat of a genuine alternative to remind them they don't automatically get to hoover up the pro-indy vote indefinitely without doing anything about it.

    Perhaps Alba don't want that role, but if not someone else will eventually.

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    1. I can't see why we need "justification" for 4, given that it represents common sense and rational self-interest, irrespective of whether the SNP do the right thing.

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  15. as an SNP member still ( just !) , I agree with all four points.
    However , politicians all respond to pressure from the public.
    We need to get the campaign going . Marches , protests and why not take a leaf out of some of the environmental protesters and use non-violent direct action to get the UK gov to recognise our democratically expressed wish for indy ref 2 . And indeed our right to have one whenever parliament votes for one. Action to annoy the Westminster government would be particularly potent.

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  16. Why does nobody point out that all the threats of violence, and of death!!, come from the TRA's? (unless anyone can find the counterexample)

    All the TRA's have to object to is that they (claim to be) made to feel uncomfortable.

    This ought to be obvious to the media, and to the authorities.

    I see one of our number has complained to the UK Parliament about the K vs J affair on Twitter, and suggested that others should follow suit. It's certainly time that K should be made accountable for her actions, but sad that we need to resort to the UK Parliament.

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  17. Well you are trying James. I will give you that. None of the above is possible as long as Sturgeon and her hetero and man and Indy hating coven is running the SNP.

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